Northern expo best in transport
STATE-of-the-art trucks proved to be a highlight of the huge North Queensland Field Days.
More than $100 million worth of equipment was on display at the 22nd NQ Field Days on May 16-17, one of Australia's biggest such events.
It was held on the Stuart Prison Reserve beside the highway just 10km south of Townsville at Julago.
Known as the Expo of the North the bi-annual event attracted more than 50,000 people.
There were more than 500 powered sites and more than 300 exhibitors' exhibitions. Big Rigs was there and saw many road transport people checking out the latest new trucks and every make was on display.
They were looking at the latest road trains, tippers, light rigs and lots of other equipment.
Long-time Richmond transport operator Mick Pattel, the former President of the NRFA, was looking at a Mack Titan.
"There is a big roll-up here which is good," Mr Pattel said.
Nortrans representatives Seeton Battle and Rod Battle were checking out some flashy Western Stars.
Ashlee Keen, aged 19, from the Garbutt-based family company Azkeen Industries was sitting in the seat of a new MAN.
"It is very confortable," she said.
A lot of students and their mentors were looking at potential careers in the mining, agriculture and industrial sectors. Townsville Flexible Learning Centre supervisor Genus Passi, teacher's aide Joseph Mooka and Chaplain Tom Neliman said they brought students to the Field Days for educational purposes.
"They can see what goes on and have a look at the equipment used," Mr Passi said.
While the car parks were packed with hundreds of vehicles, many took the opportunity to get to the Field Days in a free bus which made regular runs from three Townsville locations.
It was so busy that police had to direct traffic into the car parks on both sides of the Bruce Highway.
A lot of those in attendance enjoyed a cold amber fluid and a bite to eat with acquaintances from the road transport industry.
It was reported that trucks were sold and the event injected a huge amount into the local economy with visitors coming from as far away as Brisbane, Mount Isa and Cape York.
Organisers thanked the Queensland Department of Corrections for allowing them to use the Prison Reserve.