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TNDC unveils virtual HEO training center

North of 60 Mining News - January 26, 2024

New heavy equipment operator training center equipped with cutting-edge simulators to train Tahltan residents for careers close to home.

Northwest British Columbia residents now have a safe and virtual environment for heavy equipment operator training thanks to the new TNDC Training Centre equipped with four simulators that was unveiled by Tahltan Nation Development Corp. at the AME Roundup mining convention in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Jan. 24.

"We are thrilled to unveil the TNDC Mobile Training Centre," said Colleen Cashin, vice president of people and corporate culture at Tahltan Nation Development Corp. "The vision for the TNDC Mobile Training Centre will be to build capacity for Tahltans, our employees and to improve career growth opportunities."

Established in collaboration with Finning Canada, the Caterpillar dealership for western Canada, the innovative TNDC Training Centre is a 44-foot trailer equipped with four simulators that each has a unique program for learning to operate Cat articulated trucks, dozers, loaders, and excavators.

"When we had the chance to partner with our long-standing customer and provide the TNDC with a mobile training center, we didn't hesitate to say yes," said Cheryl Gray, senior vice president of mining at Finning Canada. "Simulator training provides a safe, hands-on experience for learners using the same controls and machine applications found in real-world worksites."

The primary purpose of the TNDC Mobile Training Centre will be to support the Tahltan heavy equipment operator programs.

The training center will have the capacity to train 80-120 staff members each year, either through upskilling current operators or training new ones. Beyond training new operators, the training available through this center is expected to increase employee retention and productivity, while also reducing recruitment and onboarding expenses.

In addition to providing the four simulators, the Finning team is supporting the installation and initial troubleshooting of the equipment, as well as the training of Tahltan instructors.

This represents a substantial investment that highlights the collective commitment by TNDC and Finning to build a talent pipeline for future heavy equipment operators in the Tahltan territory in Northern BC.

Once in operation, TNDC will be responsible for operating and maintaining the center and running the training programs.

"We are excited to support the Tahltans in developing the skills they need to become certified Heavy Equipment Operators," said Gray.

The training center will be based on Newmont's Red Chris copper-gold mine within the Tahltan traditional territory but can be relocated to other sites as needed.

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Shane Lasley, Publisher

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Over his more than 16 years of covering mining and mineral exploration, Shane has become renowned for his ability to report on the sector in a way that is technically sound enough to inform industry insiders while being easy to understand by a wider audience.

 

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