Truck driving apprenticeship to become a reality

A new national “Certificate III in Driving Operations” will see the transport and logistics industry work with states and territory governments to develop a truck driving apprenticeship for the first time.

HVIA Chief Executive Todd Hacking attended the launch of the ground-breaking initiative at John West Logistics at Eagle Farm in Brisbane yesterday.

“This is an exciting and historic announcement following the endorsement of a new framework by federal, state and territory Skills Ministers,” Mr Hacking said.

“With the spotlight on it over the last couple of years, the community definitely has a new-found respect for the essential role of the road transport industry.

“This important initiative will go a long way towards removing the barriers to entry that have made it so difficult for the next generation to choose this meaningful career path.

“Congratulations to all the industry stakeholders who have been at the table, and to the Australian and State Governments for their determination to see this become a reality.”

Each state and territory will now consider adding the apprenticeship to their training programs, with existing Commonwealth funding for apprenticeships and training flowing as soon as they do

The Transport and Logistics Industry Reference Committee finalised updates to the Certificate III in Driving Operations and the nationally agreed enhancements have been recommended for delivery as an apprenticeship, subject to States and Territories agreement.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the new national trucking apprenticeship was a critical step to address a potential shortfall in the trucking workforce while meeting supply chain needs.

“Securing Australia’s economic recovery relies on the thousands of men and women driving trucks right around our country every single day,” the Prime Minister said.

“Our trucking sector drives our economy and there couldn’t be a more important job than getting food on the table to millions of families or delivering COVID-19 vaccines to doctors, hospitals and pharmacies right around Australia.” 

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said the new apprentice pathway would help lift the professionalism of the transport industry and attract new workers.

“The transport industry is the lifeblood that keeps Australia moving and supplied, Australia stops without our hard-working truck drivers, it is as simple as that,” Assistant Minister Buchholz said.

“Truck driving is about more than just changing gears and unloading, by providing a national driver training framework, our future truck drivers will have an advanced competency across the profession, such as load constraints, transporting dangerous goods and pre-departure inspection.

“This is a new approach to ensuring our transport industry has the workforce of the future and provides young Australians with the opportunity to have a career, not just a job – in a rewarding industry.

“The Commonwealth led the nation on this, and we will continue to work with State and Territories Skills Ministers to ensure they step up to roll out this new and exciting apprenticeship pathway for the next generation of professional, Australian truck drivers.”

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