Electric and battery vehicles have risen in popularity in the light automotive industry over the past decade and now the heavy vehicle and mobile plant industry are following suit.
To meet the demands of these evolving industries, TAFE Queensland has begun working towards introducing new electric and battery training to ensure apprentices have the skill sets and practical training needed to prepare them for this technology and a changing industry.
TAFE Queensland already offers two stand-alone skill sets for existing heavy and light automotive trades people, Hybrid Electric Vehicle Inspection and Servicing Skill Set (AURSS00037) and Battery Electric Vehicle Inspection and Servicing Skill Set (AURSS00064) and is looking forward to extending its current training offerings in this space.
Under TAFE Queensland’s existing heavy vehicle apprenticeships, four new training units are being proposed to teach all aspects of electric and vehicle battery maintenance from depowering and reinitialising, inspection, servicing and ongoing maintenance.
TAFE Queensland heavy automotive business manager, David Jenkinson, said it is clear that the heavy automotive industry is evolving quickly and training organisations are needing to adapt to the new technologies being introduced.
“After 140 years providing quality training, we at TAFE Queensland have seen many changes across the industries we service and are constantly liaising with those industries to provide them with the most skilled apprentices in the state,” Jenkinson said.
“Electric and battery heavy vehicle training is no different, the industry has told us there will be a need for skilled workers who can service and maintain electric vehicles of all shapes and sizes and we will provide our apprentices with those skills.”
To further support the needs of industry and apprentices, TAFE Queensland’s Acacia Ridge campus opened a purpose built Heavy Plant Centre of Excellence in 2021 that provides up-to-date industry relevant electronic and battery operated vehicles and machinery training.
Funded by the Queensland Government, the centre was built in response to an industry need for workers to be safely trained in these emerging technologies and to ensure industry is equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to reduce the risks associated with working on these vehicles and machinery.
Whilst TAFE Queensland already has a varied fleet of electric and battery operated vehicles and machinery for apprentices to train on, they have further added to this fleet through the recent purchase of a hybrid truck and zero emissions fully electric JCB excavator.
Jenkinson says the JCB excavator will be a fantastic training tool for apprentices.
“JCB are a great industry partner and have shown their commitment to assisting us by providing free diagnostic software which will be utilised in the training of our apprentices on the excavator,” Jenkinson said.
“Our apprentices will be streets ahead of the competition from being able to do practical learning on the equipment currently used in industry,” he said.
For more information regarding TAFE Queensland apprenticeships visit tafeqld.edu.au or call 1300 308 233.