Truckie Profiles

Veteran truckie still has many miles ahead

When I saw a veteran driver sitting in the cabin of his Western Star 4900 the first thing I noticed was the large rubber thongs on his feet.

Nothing unusual about that because many of our drivers don the same footwear.

But the difference here is that this driver is named John Thong. He works for Singh Transport based at Dalby.

“I am carrying scrap metal from Townsville to Brisbane,” he said.

I asked John, 60, what the scrap metal was from.

“It is all from old washing machines,” he said.

The B-double, powered by a 600hp motor and with an 18-speed road ranger gearbox, was parked at a Townsville roadhouse.

A driver for 30 years, John said he does get a lot of comments about his surname.

He added that the worst road he gets along is between Capella and Clermont.

“It is terrible and rough,” John said.

John likes stopping at the BP Clermont roadhouse and says drivers need more good rest areas with facilities.

He is a big fan of the Brisbane Broncos in the NRL and his favourite player is forward Patrick Carrigan.

As for hobbies outside work, John said he had two favourite habits.

“Sleeping and drinking beer. My favourite brew is Great Northern Original,” he said.

Whilst this friendly driver wears out a few pairs of thongs a year, on a personal note he has no intention of retiring soon.

“I love the job and the people I meet,” he said.

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