Crate family service for Tamworth livestock mover


YOU would think livestock hauler Mckyla Hull could easily get a livestock body fitted to her Fuso Fighter in a jiffy.

We all know how long many people can wait for truck bodies and trailers, but Mckyla does have the advantage of owning a stock-crate and tray fabrication business with her husband John in the New South Wales town of Tamworth.

However, Mckyla did the right thing and waited for her spot in the JM Welding queue as her new Fuso truck sat idle.

After six months, which seemed like an eternity to Mckyla, she was ready to hit the road in the smart livestock hauler.

“No jumping the queue for me. I had to wait in line like everybody else,” she told Big Rigs during a break at the family farm.

“But it was worth the wait, and it was so nice when it was finished,” she added.

Mckyla loves truck driving, which probably should not come as a surprise.

Her father Darren drove a livestock truck and Mckyla and her brother spent a lot of time washing it, and went for the occasional ride-along. Now, her mostly-retired father comes along sometimes and shares driving duties with Mckyla to make sure she doesn’t run out of hours on her logbook.

“Dad loves that I ended up driving a livestock truck,” she said with a smile.

Given the livestock industry has been so traditionally male-dominated, it is no small achievement.

Mckyla and John Hull buy and sell cattle, which accounts for some of her cargo, but most of the work for the JM Pastoral transport arm is moving cows, sheep and goats for others all over New South Wales.

Her old Fuso Fighter served Mckyla well, but it had recently notched up 800,000km and was ready to leave the road and take on a new role as a farm truck.

“It was a great truck that never let me down and it also went like a scolded cat, which was nice. We didn’t have to touch the engine or gearbox or even change a clutch, but given its mileage I didn’t want to take the chance that it would give up out in some really remote location,” she explained.

Mckyla didn’t hesitate to head into JT Fossey to buy a new Fuso Fighter. Partly because she knew how reliable the Fighter is, but also because her family has known salesman John Saint for decades.

“John is such a great guy and we have always had fantastic service from the guys at JT Fossey. They are always keen to help,” she said.

Mckyla chose a 1627 Fighter, which gets along using a 270hp/784Nm 7.5-litre six-cylinder turbo diesel linked up to a nine-speed manual.

No fancy self-shifting gearboxes here, Mckyla wants her gear as simple as possible so that if ever anything does go wrong, it can be fixed anywhere, at any time.

The Fighter also comes with a manufacturer warranty that covers the truck for five years or 350,000km, whichever comes first, which provides additional peace of mind.

The Fighter was fitted with a JM Welding 24-foot single deck anti-bruise stock crate that features in-floor drainage, drop ramp and a rear-slide gate.

It can carry around 80 to 100 sheep, 35 smaller cows (200kg) or 18 large cows and Mckyla covers a lot of ground moving stock to all corners of the state.

“One of the best things about my job is travelling to all these wonderful places. I just love it,” she said.

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