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A TAFE NSW qualification has James Flack on the frontline of a new career keeping lives safe while improvements are made to local roads.
Mr Flack (28) was one of a recent group who completed Traffic Control qualifications at the TAFE NSW Narrandera Connected Learning Centre in March. Each of the graduates went on to find employment on local road projects including the $600 million Newell Highway upgrade.
Mr Flack is a welder by trade, however a move from Queensland to settle in Narrandera found him seeking a new career. He contacted Sureway Employment and Training in the hope of finding something local. They pointed him to the Traffic Controller course at TAFE NSW. The idea was for Mr Flack to gain some qualifications in an area where employees are in demand.
“I was after a change from welding and it turned out traffic control was just the ticket. Our TAFE NSW teacher was exceptionally good at making sure we knew the information we needed,” he said.
“We also had plenty of time for hands-on practical work, so I felt well prepared for what I had to do from day one on the job. “There’s quite a lot of responsibility that comes with managing traffic around work sites.”
To gain his Statement of Attainment in Control Traffic and Implement Traffic Control Plans, Mr Flack had to understand the risks involved with working on roads, establish signage around work sites, be able to use radio communication, and the Phonetic Alphabet. As part of the short course, students cover both the theory and practical aspects of the job, including attending a simulated worksite.
With his traffic control qualification complete Mr Flack quickly found work on the highway upgrade.
“I like working outdoors and this is a job with plenty of variety. We’re always setting up on new sections of road, so each day is different. I get to see a lot of faces each day and most drivers are friendly. I’ve had some offer me snacks and drinks and wind their window down for a bit of a chat. It’s nice to know people appreciate what I’m doing,” he said.
TAFE NSW Civil Construction Teacher Greg Walsh said the short course was a relatively quick way to learn job-ready, practical skills, and earn an industry-recognised qualification.
To enquire about enrolling in the Control Traffic and Implement Traffic Control Plans short course, call 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au.
Media contact: Adam Wright, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist, 02 9217 4220.