Erin: Train Driver

Erin Devenish’s driving ambition has always been to become a locomotive driver…but the communications graduate didn’t have a straightforward journey to achieve her goal.

Born in Melbourne, Erin grew up around Werribee and Hoppers Crossing. On completing school, Erin went on to study at university, before graduating in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in marketing and Communication. But it was a career in rail, which truly captured her passion.

Four years later, determined to chase her dream of becoming an intermodal driver, she applied for a role with PN that landed her in our Maryborough depot, working as a driver’s assistant on grain trains.

The 36-year-old spent several years in the role, travelling between Adelaide, Dimboola and Melbourne, while building up her experience and knowledge.

Erin first started working as a casual trainee driver in Dimboola, before quickly progressing to full time all the while sitting her driver’s theory exams.

The process involved a three-day examination including trips with trainers back and forth to Melbourne. “I always wanted to work for Pacific National intermodal…that is where I wanted to end up.”

On her achievement, Erin says it’s still sinking in. “Nothing is ever easy, and I sort of have zig zagged in my career to get here…it sort of hasn’t settled in yet that I have actually passed out.”

Nothing is ever easy, I didn't take the traditional path to get to where I am and to be honest, it still feels a little surreal that I am the first woman to become a licensed locomotive driver at Dimboola.

Erin credits the support of her leaders, mentors and trainers for helping her reach her goal. “If it wasn’t for their belief in me and their encouragement, I don’t believe I would be where I am now.”

Someone who thrives on working to deadlines and solving problems, Erin enjoys the variety of her role. “You never know what conditions you will come up against. Every shift is different and that is what I love about it. It is never boring on the job.”

Mechanically minded, and a bit of a country girl at heart, Erin says she would recommend other women who are interested in the job to give it a shot. “Train driving is an incredibly rewarding career.”

As for what her future holds? “I’ll see my job out here, because this is where I want to be.”