Inspired by his father and grandfather, Leigh Butcher, 33, developed a love for trucks at a very young age. “I grew up around trucks. My pop and my dad were both truckies. Pop did livestock; and dad did livestock and general,” he said.
Butcher joined the army when he was 18, where he was a heavy truck driver. After five years, he left the army and got straight into interstate trucking, pulling tankers and road trains.
Based in Swan Hill, Victoria, Butcher travels far and wide – and that’s what he loves most about the job. “I love the travel, it’s something different every day. I love travelling to Darwin, Perth, Far North Queensland, anywhere off the grid,” he said.
Though with three young daughters aged two, seven and nine, the travel has also become the hardest part of the job too. “I love being away, but at the same time it’s hard when you have a family. The missus and the kids are the reason I go home, otherwise I love being on the road. The kids all love going in the truck too.”
Though his hopes are for a different career path for his girls. “I work hard so they don’t have to,” he added.
Butcher now works for K&M Trucking in Swan Hill and has been there for the past 12 months. You’ll find him behind the wheel of a vibrant green machine – an impressive Kenworth T900 Legend, usually pulling an AB-triple filled with bulk commodities such as grain, sorghum, fertiliser and the like.
When Big Rigs spoke with him, Butcher said he was spending some time in Queensland to work on the massive harvest.
He also nominated the Central Arnhem Road in the Northern Territory as the toughest he has to navigate. “You reach a top speed of about 35km/h for about 600 out of the 700 kilometre stretch. She’s pretty painful,” he added.
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