Awards, News, Show and Shine, Shows, Truck events

Drivers gear up for National Female Truckies’ Day

The second annual National Female Truckies’ Day is fast approaching – with truckies from all over Australia travelling to Adelaide to celebrate this weekend.  

Women in Trucking Australia (WiTA) has teamed up with Camp Quality to organise a whopper charity convoy, with 140 trucks registered to take part.  

The convoy will start and finish at Victoria Park, travelling a 36km route around Adelaide and Port Adelaide.  

At the event venue, “big kids and little kids” will enjoy a family fun day, with face painting, live music, food fans, kids’ rides and more.  

Attendees can also cheer on the returning trucks and get a closer look at a Show ‘n’ Shine after the convoy. 

Meanwhile at the Victoria Park Social Club, guests of WiTA will celebrate women in the road transport industry with a special lunch featuring a panel discussion and awards ceremony.  

Lyndal Denny, CEO of WiTA, told Big Rigs: “We want to celebrate female truckies because they are out there working hard and they deserve recognition.  

“I once had a fellow say to me, ‘The real heroes are the wives of the truck drivers, who keep the home fires burning and take care of the kids.’  

“Well, a lot of the time, female truck drivers are still the primary carers, so they are juggling the job with looking after their family.  

“These women fly under the radar, so we like to spotlight the work they are doing and also show other women that this could be the job for them.”  

Lyndal Denny has driven road trains throughout WA, SA, QLD, NSW, Victoria and across the top end.

WiTA’s “Toots awards”, named after legendary female truckie Toots Holzheimer, will celebrate inspirational women in the transport industry.  

“Last year we had a People’s Choice award for Driver of the Year,” Denny said.  

“This year, we’ve expanded the categories to include a diversity and inclusion award and a safety award as well as our National Female Driver of the Year award.  

“We’ll also be giving a Lifetime Achievement Award to a female truckie called Suzette Byrnes Statham O’Reilly, who is in her late 70s and still driving!” 

A panel discussion, moderated by Camp Quality CEO and former editor of The Australian Women’s Weekly Deborah Thomas, will feature four female road train drivers.  

“We’ve got last year’s People’s Choice award winner, Chloe Anderson, and we’ve got a quad cattle driver who is also an indigenous woman, Kattie Risk.  

“There’s also Nat Kascak who does triple gas tankers, and Danyelle Haigh who was on several series of Outback Truckers and now has her own show, Outback Farm.”  

Denny thanked industry event planner Imelda Bergin for organising this weekend’s celebrations.

“It’s thanks to Imelda’s experience and expertise that the TOOTS Awards are a sell out,” she added.

Anyone attending the celebrations on July 6 who might be interested in becoming a truck driver is welcome to speak to the WiTA representatives there on the day.  

“We will have plenty of female heavy vehicle drivers in the crowd who are happy to answer questions about establishing a truck driving career,” Denny continued.  

“Women are hard-wired to become successful truck drivers because we do sweat the small stuff, and it’s the small stuff that dovetails into safety.  

“Currently only about 2 per cent of truck drivers in Australia are women, and our ethos is to achieve gender parity by 2050.  

“All in all, July 6 is a day to celebrate female heavy vehicle drivers, to remember our female veteran drivers that came before us, and to try to encourage more women to become drivers, so we can increase those numbers as the years go by.” 


1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend