With significant changes coming to our industry this year, it was fantastic to be able to round off 2019 with the successful certification of New Zealand's first group of Utility Locators.
Throughout the second week of December, an initial group of 10 Utility Locators undertook their practical assessment as part of the beforeUdig Certified Locator program. With such a small industry and having no qualified New Zealand assessors, the practicals were carried out by Steve Wood, a highly experienced Assessor provided through the Australian Locator certification organisation DCL.
Following an initial online examination that tested a candidate's knowledge of locating theory, the assessment evaluates a Locator's skills and competency on the use of electromagnetic location methods and equipment.
Never ones to be beaten by our Aussie counterparts it was a credible result for New Zealand that we achieved a 70% pass rate, consistent with the DBYD Certified Locator program when it first launched there.
Nulca New Zealand would like to congratulate all seven candidates who passed to become industry recognised and certified Utility Locators:
- Ben Giles, Utility Scan
- Rob Marshall-Lee, Safety First Service Locators
- Callum Bruce, Reveal
- Jordan Moratti, Reveal
- Elle Archer, ELG
- Steve Welch, Sub-Surface Detection
- Damon Strong, Sub-Surface Detection
An industry-backed assessment of Locator competency is a significant step towards recognising the essential skills and training that go into becoming a skilled Utility Locator. It's an activity that carries a substantial risk if done poorly. With no previous barrier to entry or requirement for training, the introduction of certification is a move in the right direction.
In time beforeUdig Certified Locators will be recognised by our industry clients as those having the "right stuff" when it comes to carrying out their work. As has already occurred in Australia, certified Locators will be the only ones permitted to work on many projects and with industry users.
If you are a practising Locator, Nulca NZ encourages you to undertake proper training and mentored field experience before aiming to become a New Zealand beforeUdig Certified Locator.