A visit from LDO Training Group over the last fortnight has seen two groups of attendee’s benefit from heavy vehicle machinery training being conducted at Bingara’s Living Classroom. An opportunity through Joblink Plus, LDO Group training State Training and The Living Classroom has brought the trainees to site to work on several projects which have been waiting for attention for some time.
A re-sheet of the roadway adjacent to the main building at the Living Classroom has been completed as well as work on fire trails within the grounds and major works on an existing dam at the rear of the site to see it expanded.
Ben Cornish, of Bingara, has enjoyed the opportunity. “It’s been good, I’m loving it. If something comes up with the Inland Rail this will have been good. You could take it anywhere really,” he said.
Ken Yeo travelled from Inverell each day and although he had had limited experience working with an excavator, he found the weeks training really boosted his knowledge.
Trainers Dave Bottomley and Rod Cameron travel across the north west conducting group training for various groups in different government areas. This opportunity is hoped to provide enticing skills for the Inland Rail Project as it rolls out across the north of the Gwydir Shire.
Mr Cameron says this training has been a fabulous opportunity for people with little or no prior experience with heavy machines to get some hours up and prepare themselves for other job opportunities while conducting work that adds to the site. The chance to complete meaningful tasks is a great advantage rather than just digging holes only to have to fill them in again.
“Having a living project where the boys can see what they can achieve has been really beneficial. Everyone goes home with a real sense of achievement. People have only got to be enthusiastic enough to turn up and participate. It’s up to them from here.” They learn how to service and look after the machines as they operated them and get out of a situation if they get stuck. Learning about safety and treating each day as a workday, with a meeting to start and planning the day. Each worker starts with a white card and an induction before the day begins, and continues with them being, essentially, contractors. They get to see just what the job entails,” he said.
Incidentally, the group continues to learn about working as a team, time management and particularly site safety. Throughout the day and the week, the group has gained experience across excavators, rollers, bobcats, moving close to 3000 cubic metres of dirt.
Living Classroom manager, Rick Hutton has welcomed the work being conducted as part of the training, with the outcome mutually beneficial for all parties. “One of the great advantages for us is that it would be rare for the Gwydir Shire to get this number people to do this project. The benefits for us is it is all important projects: part fire break, water capture, flood prevention. Then they get the practical experience and sense of achievement,” said Mr Hutton. “We’re very pleased. These are some of the most patient trainers I’ve ever seen. Very patient and very supportive. I’ve not seen as good a program as this for a long, long time.”