Isabella had the pleasure of meeting Samantha Russell, known as Sam, from Swanson Transport Ltd in Auckland.

One of the interesting things I learnt is that Sam is the only female operator at Swanson Transport. Six years with the company, she now proudly operates an 8-Wheeler Rear Mount Hiab – a job that she didn’t expect to be doing as a young girl but is super proud of.

You can do it, too

In a male-dominated industry, her message to young girls is, “If transport is the career path you are thinking of, and you want to operate one of these big machines, go for it! Girls and women can do the same jobs as the boys and can do it just as well!”

What Sam also loves about her role is the variety of work she gets to do while also discovering some beautiful parts of New Zealand. Getting to know the North Island well, one of her favorite drives would be to Tauranga.

Safety first

Sam knows that being an operator comes with a lot of responsibility, and safety is always key to make sure she can perform her job. Pre-checks every morning to make sure the truck is in good condition to allow her to get to her job. There are also safety checks that are done on arrival and departure from a work site. Operating these machines requires you to be alert of your surroundings, which is why it’s important to get a good night’s rest. Sam has been fortunate that Swanson Transport have been able to assist her get the licences she needs.

Hard at work
What a view
It takes a lot of skill to operate this machinery