In response to the widely publicised driver shortages in Western Australia, Qube has taken the issue into its own hands, with a series of intensive 10-week MC operator trainee programs running over 12 months.
The MC Road Train Operator training program began in February 2021, with the first intake of drivers having successfully completed the program and gone into roles at Qube Bulk sites across the state – predominantly in the mid-west and north-west.
Since the trainee program was first launched earlier this year, Qube has received over 700 applications.
Qube said the programs provide MC licensed truck drivers with training, hands on skills and knowledge to become professional MC road train operators, with a guaranteed full-time position within Qube Bulk’s Western Australian operations upon successful completion.
Qube Bulk handles over 85 million tonnes per annum of various bulk ores, concentrates, mineral sands, salt, coal and dangerous goods.
Servicing both on and off-road haulage needs, its fleet is as diverse as the products it carries – from pneumatic tankers for cement and lime; bulk liquid tankers for fuel and sulphuric acid; to side, end and bowl tippers.
In recent times, the struggle to find skilled drivers to service the company’s growing needs has been further exacerbated by ongoing Covid interstate travel restrictions.
Through its MC programs, new trainee intakes have been commencing each month, with plans to train and deploy 120 MC road train operators within the year, with a 30 per cent female output.
To achieve the latter, the intake which began the program on April 26, was exclusively open to females.
According to Qube, this intensive HR to MC operator trainee program was aimed at females wanting to kickstart a career as a professional MC road train operator across the mining and resources sector.
“We are committed to working to encourage female participation and career opportunities within Qube to build a diverse and inclusive workforce that empowers each and every person to achieve,” added Qube.
In addition to comprehensive road train driver training, all program participants learn maintenance skills such as changing tyres, receive front-end loader training, and receive dangerous goods license training, which provides multiple options for them once they begin their permanent roles.
At the completion of the course, further onsite training is provided, specific to the freight being carried, along with the client’s needs. Progression is staged to help ensure safe and competent operations throughout their employment.