As many as 80 electrical apprentices join inspectors from Access Canberra on worksites each year as part of a program to upskill and enhance safety.
Through this innovative and collaborative program apprentices join their regulator, who will be checking their work in the years to come, to understand electrical safety and to demystify the role of electrical inspectors.
ACT Minister for Regulatory Services, Gordon Ramsay, said the program, which was created by the inspectors themselves seven years ago, supported the next generation of electricians working in the ACT and ensured they started their trade with a solid electrical safety understanding.
“The program also provides apprentices exposure to different types of electrical work which they may not have encountered through their training to date, such as new housing projects, photovoltaic arrays, apartment blocks and industrial applications,” Mr Ramsay said.
“The apprentices also learn the key skills of inspecting and testing an electrical installation to Australian Standards, and the key electrical safety issues they should be aware of which hold them in good stead on the job.”
Mr Ramsay said that over the years up to 400 apprentices had been part of the program which had benefits not only for the apprentices, but workplaces, industry, regulators and the community. Often trades teachers also join the inspectors to ensure their skills are current.
“As well as electrical safety being increased it is also pleasing to hear that the program often also leads to career-long mentorships between the electrical professionals,” Mr Ramsay said.
“Access Canberra operates through an engage, educate and enforce model of regulation and compliance. This program is just one of the great examples of regulators working not only to enforce regulation but also engage with and educate industry to support the best and safest outcomes for our community.”
A similar program is also in operation with the plumbing inspectors and apprentices.