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Big wheels are turning in mining and heavy auto training

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

11 December 2023

It was a monumental day when South Metropolitan TAFE (SM TAFE) received the donation of a Sandvik underground truck from mining service employer Barminco, which has provided a significant injection into our Thornlie campus’ training inventory.

If you’ve got a dream to work with the big machines, set the wheels in motion and take the first step. With an SM TAFE qualification, you can quite simply, be more!

The donation of the Sandvik truck boosts capacity to train plant mechanic apprentices, equipping students with in-demand skills to get job-ready for mining and heavy automotive fields. Barminco, a Perenti Group company, is one of the largest employers of SM TAFE apprentices across a range of training areas, with 92 active apprentices. 

Training Minister Simone McGurk MLA and Member for Thornlie Chris Tallentire MLA welcomed Barminco’s Sandvik underground truck to SM TAFE’s Heavy Mechanical Training Centre.

The vehicle has served its time in mine life but its purpose lives on and in the next five years, over 5,000 apprentices will be exposed to the truck.

The trainees will gain valuable training in the diagnosis, repair, servicing and maintenance across a range of areas including hydraulics, brakes, steering, engines and electrical systems. Under the guidance of expert lecturers, apprentices get skilled in being the builder and fixer of the big machines, becoming workforce ready for the mining industry.

Worth $1.8 million new, the truck is a well-received addition to the Heavy Vehicle Mechanical Training Centre, which provides trainees hands-on experience with contemporary machinery used onsite by industry. Students build technical skills working in simulation rooms using advanced equipment and the latest techniques.

Want to get a truckload of training and start your career in mining or heavy automotive?

Start with the AUR31220 Certificate III in Mobile Plant Technology which will build the foundations for your journey into automotive service and repair.

Alternatively, undertake the MEM31419 Certificate III in Engineering – Mechanical Trade (Plant Mechanic) or the AUR31120 Certificate III in Heavy Commercial Vehicle Mechanical Technology to get skilled in how the heavy machines run.

Thanks to Barminco for providing this valuable donation to the SM TAFE Heavy Vehicle Mechanical Training Centre, which will leave a legacy in training WA’s next generation of mining and heavy auto workers. The donation complements the State Governments $25 million investment in modern equipment for WA TAFE colleges.