Published: 22 November 2019
Massive investment in rail infrastructure is underway and will continue for the next decade. Projects such as Cross River Rail in Brisbane, Inland Rail, Sydney and Melbourne Metros, the Level Crossing Removal Program, the Metronet project in Perth, rail extensions in South Australia, expansion of rail lines in the Pilbara, and numerous light rail projects in cities across the country, are heralding this investment boom.
But, this has not always been the case. Late in 2018, the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) launched a report that assesses workforce capability based on planned and forecast rail infrastructure development over the next 10 years. The report observed that since the 1980s the rail sector was characterised by stagnation in rail investment, stop-start funding cycles and short-term cost cutting. View the ARA Report here.
One of the consequences has been the collapse of investment in training and skills development of the people to build our infrastructure and to operate and maintain first class rail services.
The Report says, 'The term supply and demand is well understood in the marketplace. However, as to rail skills in the current investment environment, it is a case of ‘demand and no supply.’
Rail skill shortage of lineworkers
One of the significant rail skill shortages is for lineworkers who undertake the construction and maintenance of rail networks.
In response to this need, the Level Crossing Removal Project (LXRP), and the Rail Academy (Victoria), through “Training for the Future” and the “Workforce Training Innovation Fund” appointed Thomson Bridge to develop the courseware, and assessment tools required to offer a fully contextualised qualification in light and heavy rail, this is the UET30712/UET30719 Certificate III in ESI - Power Systems - Rail Traction.
Commencing 2020, Thomson Bridge will be offering career pathways to bring new and existing lineworkers into the rail industry by gaining the UET30712/UET30719 Certificate III in ESI - Power Systems - Rail Traction qualification.
These pathways will include:
- School-Leaver Apprenticeships
- Adult Apprenticeships
- Adult Bridging Apprenticeships (using Recognition of Prior Learning and Gap training)
For further information view the pages below and call our office.
Rail – Tram and Trains (Short Courses) Certificate III in ESI Power Systems Qualifications