EIT tutor Verdun Rodgers and the logging truck used to give students first-hand experience as they study towards a New Zealand Certificate in Commercial Road Transport.
One of the most popular learning tools on the EIT campus at the moment is the institute’s new logging truck, which is enabling students to get real-time experience in the forests and on difficult forestry roads.
Commercial Road Transport graduates are getting snapped up as soon as they get their Class 5 licence to operate a truck and trailer unit like the one that will soon be sporting full EIT colours.
Having the truck means students can learn best practices for the forestry industry, says tutor Verdun Rodgers.
In the past they learned with whatever truck EIT could hire, which was usually a tipper, he said.
While these were used in forestry operations, having the logging truck enabled them to get hands-on experience of loading, RT (two-way radio), using scales to determine their exact load and CTI (central tyre inflation). The latter enables them to adjust tyre pressure to suit terrain.
“The truck enables them to do real work and get real life experience,” says Mr Rodgers.
The first 20-week intake of students was fully subscribed, with a waiting list forming for the next intake.
“Before they have even finished I have employers contacting me seeking good drivers,” said Mr Rodgers.
“As soon as they get their Class 5 licence, they are snapped up.”
Depending on what licences they have when they start, some can get through after one course.
Some require a short extension course to acquire their Class 5.
The course was developed in conjunction with the industry.
The truck and trailer, which is the most common unit used in the forestry industry, is shared between the Hawke’s Bay and Tairawhiti campuses.