ANYONE looking to begin a career in one of the most important professions in the country is invited to come forward, with free truck driver training being made available to Tamworth locals next week.
Tamworth Transport Supply Chain Cluster (TTSCC) has secured funding through the Regional Employment Trials program, which has allowed the group to bring in a TAFE-accredited simulator.
This will help people graduate from a car to heavy rigid license, which is the first step in becoming a seasoned truck driver.
Coordinator of the TTSCC, Susan Sims, said the program was not just for those pursuing a career in the industry, adding it could be useful for the likes of farmers who often can't afford the $1500-plus that it takes to undergo lessons.
"We are obviously looking for people interested in making the transport industry a career but there may be people on farms or other industries who haven't had the money to pay for their own training," she said.
'The whole concept of the Regional Employment Trial funding is to cast the net wide."
She said one of the other major focuses of the upcoming training program was to assure that new truck drivers were actually ready to be on the road.
According to Ms Sims, TTSCC have observed that having a licence doesn't necessarily make people good drivers, and it was important to provide "pre and post training".
The organisation's hope is that in a year's time, they can evaluate the number and performance of truck drivers in the region and make a call on how beneficial the program has been.
"It's all about safety, we're all about quality for the businesses in the region and making it a sustainable industry in the long run," she said.
"And keeping locals employed in the truck driving industry."
Increasing the amount of females in the workforce is something Ms Sims is also keen to do, and she is encouraging women to come and give it a try.
People will need to be screened, do some paperwork and be available on either Wednesday, May 12, Thursday, 13 or Friday 14 May.
Anybody interested is encouraged to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Heavy rigid licenses must be held for a year before moving onto a heavy combination, and then another 12 months must pass before trying for a multi combination permit.
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