In July 2020, I found myself with a requirement to be trained in Temporary Traffic Management – the TTM (Temporary Traffic Management) industry is not one I had been a part of up until this point (my background is in business, sales, and Civil works) so one could say I was fairly “green”.
Having no on-road experience and little knowledge about the industry; the first thing I needed to do was attend some training courses, starting with the Level 1 Basic Traffic Controller (TC) course, the pre prerequisite to Level 1 Site Traffic Management Supervisor (STMS). After completing both courses, I also went on and completed my Level 2/3 Non-Practicing STMS training.
Being a kinesthetic learner, I felt tentative coming into the classroom for a full day of theory training, plus finding out there were tests involved made the process even more daunting. The TC course I attended was through Parallaxx Training with Ettienne Bezuidenhout as the trainer. As the course began, my nerves very quickly calmed down – Ettienne has a calm and confident way of teaching which immediately puts the class at ease.
Parallaxx has developed a style of training that is tailored to those with any level of TTM knowledge. Ettienne (or ET as he introduced himself) was clearly deeply knowledgeable in this subject and was not just there to provide the group with their qualifications – he encouraged knowledge and competence. Starting with the basics we worked our way through the content as a group with ET taking the lead. Questions and practical experience were widely shared and encouraged through the day which led to a greater depth of knowledge and practical learning, resulting in each person in the class walking away with their TC qualification and an understanding of what will be required of them as a Traffic Controller on site.
Once I had gained the basic understanding it was time to get some on road experience. I was fortunate enough to shadow some experienced people at Parallaxx on active worksites such as Quay Street, and even got to see a barrier install in the dead of the night. Four weeks went by in a flash and I was ready to further my knowledge with the Level 1 Site Traffic Management Supervisor course. I highly recommend seeing some live sites before attending this course as it gave me some good grounding to refer to when thinking about site layouts.
Once I achieved my L1 STMS qualification I jumped at any opportunity to get out on site. I quickly progressed on to my Level 2/3 Non-Practicing STMS training which is current qualification I hold today.
I attended the Level 2/3 Non-Practicing STMS course through Parallaxx again, this time with Darrin Humphries as the trainer. Darrin (also known as Daz) was great – he has close to 30 years of experience in the TTM industry – not only does this man have a wealth of experience, but he is passionate in sharing his knowledge to create competence widely throughout the industry. Much like the TC course with ET, Daz encouraged the class to work together as a team to broaden our knowledge. As a group we threw many a curly question at him and challenged the content to imbed the theory into our minds. Both the Level 1 STMS and Level 2/3 NP courses held by Daz resulted in each person walking away with not only their qualification, but the ability to understand and utilize the content that had been taught.
Looking back this was a total five full days of theory training, and although my brain felt full at the end of each course, I was grateful for the experience and knowledge I had gained. After attending all three courses I noticed that Parallaxx have developed a style of teaching that is engaging, straightforward and honest – their approach is to create passionate people hungry for knowledge and competency rather than wading through content to simply get a ‘ticket.’
Parallaxx Training takes the mandatory content provided by Waka Kotahi (NZTA (NZ Transport Agency)), and rather than being ‘death by PowerPoint,’ they bring the material to life by engaging with their students, starting conversations, challenging, and encouraging learning. The outcome is students are now empowered and knowledgeable future industry leaders.
In conclusion, if you want a career in the TTM industry, then jump onto a TC and/or STMS (or any other Temporary Traffic Management) training course. And if like me, you are initially apprehensive about all the theory, then Parallaxx training is certainly a good place for you to start.