Industry leaders shine at QTA Awards


Simon National Carriers, Toll NQX, BP and Followmont Transport share in the spoils at the 2013 QTA Industry Awards

Industry leaders shine at QTA Awards
Industry leaders shine at QTA Awards
October 21, 2013

Some of the country’s leading transport firms have been recognised at the Queensland Trucking Association (QTA) Industry Awards, along with two truck drivers who have racked up more than 6.5 million incident-free kilometres between them.

The 2013 awards night, which marked the 23rd year the event has been run, handed out gongs across seven categories to acknowledge individuals and companies that have demonstrated success and excellence in the industry.

Simon National Carriers, Toll NQX, BP, Frasers Livestock Transport and Followmont Transport all walked away with awards for their efforts.

"The calibre of nominations this year has been outstanding and is reflective of the continued level of professionalism the industry strives for," the QTA says.

Darren Peach from Simon National Carriers took home the Excellence in Driving Award, while BP’s Neville Thacker was named the Professional Driver of the Year.

Peach, who commands road trains, has been in the trucking industry since 1989 and has never received a speeding fine during the more than 3.5 million kilometres he has driven.

"He is a role model for younger drivers and has developed into a great mentor for those striving towards driving excellence," the QTA says.

The Townsville-based Thacker has driven fuel tankers for BP for the past 11 years, covering 3 million kilometres in that time and maintaining an unblemished driving record.

"His ability to engage people has been valued and appreciated by his work colleagues and all road users who come into contact with him," the QTA says.

"He is highly respected for his integrity, professionalism and commitment to the importance of the road freight transport task."

John King from Toll NQX received the Industry Excellence Award for the significant compliance and safety contribution he has made during his more than 40 years in the industry.

Along with being considered as a driving force behind the use of BAB and ABB quad combinations, King has implemented 90km/h speed limits throughout the NQX fleet and been responsible for installing black boxes in trucks and introducing the company to the TruckSafe accreditation scheme.

The QTA says King’s dedication to safety in the industry has been tireless and inspirational.

"His relentless pursuit of safety standards is driven by a level of compassion and concern for the wellbeing of all staff and all drivers unsurpassed in the industry. The QTA is proud to be the first to recognise his contribution," the group says.

King says the award recognises Toll NQX’s attitude towards safety, compliance and continuous improvement.

"NQX is quite a big company. We recognised the need to change course in about 1997. We were starting to get increasing pressure from customers about safety," he says.

"We joined TruckSafe in 1998. It was absolutely the starting point for improved compliance at NQX. We’ve been huge supporters of TruckSafe ever since."

Frasers Livestock continues to be praised for its custom cross-loading module that uses a series of platforms, walkways and sliding gates to reduce the risk of drivers being injured when working with cattle.

The company’s efforts won it the QTA Safety Award, which adds to the two awards the company received at this year’s Safe Work Awards for the module.

Followmont Transport’s Tegan McFarlane nabbed the Young Achiever Award in recognition of her role in the youth recruitment initiative, GenR8 Youth Engagement program.

"As a result of this program, in 2014 Followmont will have a new injection of qualified youth into their workforce that are ‘home grown’," the QTA says.

The program itself received the People Leadership Excellence Award for its success in hosting more than 70 year-12 students in a range of structured work placement positions.

The award also recognised employers involved in the program – Followmont, KS Easter Group, Daryl Dickenson Transport, RB Russell Transport and Transpacific Industries. The QTA says the companies have shown a high level of commitment to supervision, mentoring, training and resources.

"The businesses are now using GenR8 as a preferred methodology in the areas of youth recruitment, ‘employer of choice’ branding, attraction, retention and overall employment strategy," the QTA says.

"Due to industry demand, in 2014 this program will be piloted in the Darling Downs, Lockyer Valley, north and far north Queensland regions."

The program is the brainchild of the Department of Transport and Main Roads’ Jimmy Southwood, who accepted the award on the night.

The final award, the Queensland Trucking Woman of the Year, went to Karen Bow from Workplace Health and Safety Queensland.

As the principal advisor for the department’s Transport Strategy Group, Bow has contributed to setting the direction of health and safety issues affecting the transport and logistics industry.

The QTA says the industry has benefited enormously from the implementation of the group’s safety strategies.

"Karen’s passion for the industry shines through in every aspect of her work. She instils pride and professionalism in the road transport industry and is a leader in promoting safety in the industry," the QTA says.

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