In 2003 HWR set up their own in-house driver and related trade training – the beginning of HWR Driver Training. Initially trainers were housed at the old Freight Haulage yard in Spey Street, Invercargill and then moved with Freight Haulage out to Lake Street where a team of three driver trainers operated.
On any given day our Driver Trainers can be seen out and about providing support and training to the HWR rural and specialised transport companies, SouthRoads and Allied Concrete operations in the South.
In recent years the level of interest and delivery of training offered outside of HWR has grown. Currently HWR only provide this service to companies that have a working relationship with HWR but the potential to increase the amount of external work is certainly on the radar.
In more recent years to support the growth of HWR additional Driver Trainers were employed throughout the country. In addition to the three Driver Trainers based in Invercargill we now have Driver Trainers based in Christchurch, Blenheim, Palmerston North and Auckland.
In March of this year the HWR Driver Training Centre officially opened at 92 Otepuni Avenue, Invercargill which was the original home of Southern Transport and more latterly Purdue Bros. Renovations have taken place with the old ‘smoko’ room being turned into a training room which will hold up to 15 people. A smaller room in the main office area will be ideal for the smaller class sizes of up to six people.
Last year SIT (Southern Institute of Technology) partnered with a number of Southland transport companies to offer a 16 week full time Certificate in Commercial Road Transport. The HWR Driver Trainers played a large part in getting this initiative off the ground. Two intakes were completed in 2015 and a total of 18 students completed the programme. Of the 18 students, 15 have gone onto employment within the Transport Industry. We are delighted to be once again be partnering with SIT and a number of supporting transport companies to do our part to bring new people into the industry.
Training is a growth industry and we are confident that this will present further opportunities for HWR. Having the large yard as part of the training centre will be ideal for the practical component involved with the forklift training, Classes 2 – 5 licences, load restraint courses and generally all heavy vehicle training.