Industry body Aggregate and Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa (Aspasa) is farming information from within the industry that will enable it to develop custom training courses to meet the industry’s current and future needs.
With much of the groundwork already done, the courses, seminars and workshops will match the requirements of the industry and will be designed to upskill workers of all skill levels at quarries.
Aspasa will also focus on improving efficiency, meeting stricter quality requirements and contributing to a safer and more sustainable industry in future.
“South African quarries urgently need to cultivate skills to capitalise on new techniques that are available to improve outputs and help them meet the growing need for high-quality aggregates,” says Aspasa director Nico Pienaar.
He adds that, simultaneously, courses that teach the skills required for the evolving construction methods that require aggregates that are manufactured according to exacting specifications are being developed.
Aspasa does not rely on training institutions to provide general training, but develops training materials itself to suit the exact needs of the industry.
“We want our members to be ahead of the curve,” Pienaar states.
Further information is still required from within the industry to finalise courses and to give feedback about specific training requirements on a quarry-for-quarry basis.
Thus far, Aspasa has identified the need for courses on crushing, health and safety, environmental management, risk assessment, explosives, transport legislation, lockout procedures, supervisory training, first aid and the legal require ments of a quarry, among others.
A number of other subjects on which the association needs more input were also raised and these include awareness training, environmental law and Mining Charter compliance,.
Whether courses should be provided for sales training, emergency evacuations, root cause analysis and human resources, to name a few, has been questioned, but, Pienaar says, “the sheer number of topics is bewildering and we need to get feedback from the industry to ensure that we find the target with our training efforts”.