WA's friendliest truck driver

CONTENT: Kenneth Montgomery is happy at home in the west.
CONTENT: Kenneth Montgomery is happy at home in the west.

MEET Western Australia's friendliest driver Kenneth Montgomery.

With a broad smile and a personality to match, Big Rigs stumbled across Kenneth at the Chittering Road House north of Perth.

He was on his way to another livestock load at the Moochea Cattle centre, near Gin Gin.

Kenneth's 2007 Freightliner Century was covered in a fresh coat of red dust, brushed on with the help of the beaten northern track that is the Great Northern Hwy.

The warm hue of his dusted trailers created a stark and very Aussie contrast against the deep grey skies that hung low over Australia's most western city.

Though on the job, Kenneth a farm boy at heart, was happy for a chin wag.


RIGHT TOOLS: The Freightliner Century Class suits the operation.
RIGHT TOOLS: The Freightliner Century Class suits the operation.

The Western Australian cum New Zealand native said he began his working life the same way most young rural kiwi kids did - shearing.

"So how did you end up in Perth?" we asked.

"By plane," Kenneth said revealing his dry sense of humour.

After a chuckle he elaborated further.


After moving to Australia and travelling as a shearer with a touch of international travel in between he shifted into transport and was soon offered the job of a lifetime.

"A mate of mine offered me a job in Europe driving tour buses," Kenneth said.

"But I never ended up getting there.

"I'd been to Europe before and ended up staying here working in livestock transport.

"Don't tell everyone, but carting cattle is much easier than it looks, if you let them calm down.

"Cattle are easier than sheep, but they do hurt more when they stand on your toe."

He has now been in the game for about 20 years, running his operation Mainli Transport which consists of himself, another driver and his brother who regularly subcontracts.

The operation, like many in the state, was bitten by the rollback of the mining boom a few years back and moved into livestock.


MOVE EM ON: Kenneth quietly pushes cattle up onto his truck.
MOVE EM ON: Kenneth quietly pushes cattle up onto his truck.

Changing up the livestock run with the addition of dangerous goods transport.

"We had triples and did remote, carting ammonium nitrate and a bit of general freight. A bit different to cattle, because I guess heifers aren't likely to explode," Kenneth laughed.

The conversation turned to family.

A proud father of four girls he was pleased to announce he also had another "bun in the oven".

"This one is a boy," he said with a grin.

Despite clear disparity that would remain, Kenneth believes the arrival of a son will even up the Montgomery household.

"Boys might then win a few debates," he joked.



Even his company name was centred around family. The name "Mainli" is made up of the first two initials of his daughters' names.

"We have had to keep extending it though as more kids come along. I have to catch up a bit," he said.

Despite running a successful business, Kenneth said he was content where he was and had no desire to extend interstate.

"No, no I'll leave the regulation and revenue raising to the east," he said.

"Here when you get tired you sleep, not when a book tells you to.

"The laws are workable

"I like working in livestock though because I like the people who are easygoing and always happy for a chat.

"Being a farm boy myself its what I know," he said.


Topics:  driver livestock transport western australia

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