In-house training boost for drainage operations standards

Drainage and water utility specialist Lanes Group plc has increased in-house water jetting training by 70 per cent over the last two years.

The training uplift is part of a wider skills development initiative to ensure the company sets the highest possible quality and health and safety standards.

Water jetting training is carried out by Darren Hamilton, Lanes Group Operations Training Manager, who is a Water Jetting Association (WJA) approved training instructor and sits on the WJA’s training and safety committee.

He said: “When putting our operatives through the WJA’s courses we can also take the opportunity to promote awareness, skills and standards that are specific priorities for Lanes.

“We want to promote a culture that puts both health and safety and operational effectiveness at the heart of what we do and by delivering the WJA’s training in-house, we can do that.”

The number of operatives within the Lanes depot network who have passed the WJA’s safety awareness course has increased from 190 in 2018 to a projected figure of 325 in 2019.

From January 2020, in line with WJA training improvements, all operatives who sit the Safety Awareness course will also undergo a one-day practical drain and sewer course.

All WJA training courses are accredited by City & Guilds. Lanes Group, the UK’s largest independent drainage specialist, has also developed its own suite of City & Guilds accredited courses.

These include the UK’s first drainage engineering course. Key topics covered include drain configuration, drain law, risk management, water jetting techniques, health and safety and customer care.

Lanes has also developed a cured in place pipeline (CIPP) installation course and two CCTV drainage surveying courses – one for survey reporting and the other for use of push-rod camera systems.

During 2019, up to 150 more colleagues are expected to sit and pass these additional courses.

“Our training programme is coordinated with other systems and processes that work together to enhance quality standards, including health and safety auditing and digital data reporting,” said Darren Hamilton.

“We want a multi-skilled workforce to deliver a productive and timely service and give our people job satisfaction and career opportunities within Lanes, which supports workforce stability.

“We also seek continuous improvement, for example by the introducing better personal protective equipment. Insights gained through training and staff development are vital to this process.” Lanes Group holds the RoSPA President’s Award for achieving ten consecutive Gold Awards. Its depot network also holds ISO 9001:2015, OSHAS 18001:2007, and ISO 14001:2015.

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