Hard job attracting women to 'glamour' trucking industry

Toll truck driver Amy Perkins in a Volvo truck at the Dunedin depot. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.
Toll truck driver Amy Perkins in a Volvo truck at the Dunedin depot. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.

The trucking industry needs more women and more glamour to abate the national driver shortage.

National Road Carriers executive officer Grant Turner said the transport lobby group was working hard to encourage more women to choose a career in the trucking industry.

Nationally, there was a shortage of drivers. The void could be filled by New Zealand women, but truck driving needed to be more glamorous to attract them to the industry, he said.

The industry had some glamour, particularly the driving of the multimillion-dollar trucks, he said.

''That's what people want to drive and that's where the glamour in the industry is. It is not driving an Izuzu around town delivering cartons around the main street of Dunedin. That's not glamour.''

Toll truck driver Amy Perkins (23), of Dunedin, said she had been driving medium-sized trucks in Dunedin for a year and loved it.

''It's good that you're not stuck in an office all day, every day.''

The work was ''full on'' and kept you fit and more women should enter the industry, she said.

''If you don't mind getting your hands dirty and wearing hi-vis, then go for it.''

Toll operations manager Mark Scott said the company employed three female truck drivers in Dunedin and another in Central Otago.

''They turn up, they do their job and they do it really well; end of story,'' he said.

shawn.mcavinue@odt.co.nz

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