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Whether you plan to work as a traffic controller or manage those who direct vehicles for your job, proper training is needed. You require specific knowledge to assess road conditions and weather so that you can direct motorists and reduce the risk of accidents.


If you wish to undertake traffic control related work in NSW, it is seen by many employers to represent best practice and the industry standard to complete formal training. To work directing traffic, it is strongly recommended to undertake a traffic control training course. Here is what you should know about this topic.


What Is Traffic Control Training for Sydney?


From 1 July 2020, Traffic Control cards will no longer be issued by Transport for NSW (formerly RMS). They will be issued by SafeWork NSW and will be called a Traffic Control Work Training Card.


Traffic control training courses provide theory, practical skills, and assessment for topics related to the duties of a controller. The courses are available through nationally recognised training organisations.

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Directing vehicles involves more than just holding a sign. The course includes theory and practical training. You learn how to direct users and understand stopping sight distances, along with the following topics:


  1.  Monitor traffic with portable traffic control devices and temporary traffic signs according to traffic management plans and traffic guidance scheme
  2.  Maintain traffic incident reports
  3.  Understand the Traffic Guidance Schemes (TGSs) also known as Traffic Management Plans (TMPs) for the site
  4.  Assess and respond to changes in the environment, for example traffic volumes, weather conditions, road conditions, Work Health and Safety (WHS) and operational requirements
  5.  Carry out risk assessments for personal safety
  6.  Participate in toolbox talks (specific to traffic control)
  7.  Use communication methods and device
  8.  Conform to traffic control policy and procedures


Registered organisations follow guidelines and recommendations from the WHS Act. The legislation provides specific outlines and topics for various work procedures. With the course, several different standards are followed and upon completion you will receive the following Units of Competency :


  • RIIWHS201D Work safely and follow WHS policies and work procedures
  • RIICOM201D Communicate in the workplace
  • RIIWHS205E Control traffic with a stop-slow bat
  • RIIWHS206 Control traffic with portable traffic control devices and temporary traffic signs


The basic course does not include RIIWHS302E for implementing road management plans. If you want to learn these skills, you need to enrol in the implement traffic control plans course.


Implement Traffic Control plans  addresses the skills and knowledge for personnel responsible for traffic management on a site to implement a work zone traffic management plan in the immediate vicinity of a workplace.


This course does not qualify a participant to control traffic with a stop/slow bat or boom gate, or to modify existing traffic control plans.


This program is suited to those who have traffic controller experience and wish to further their career within the traffic control/management industry.


This training course will cover the following topics:

  • Identify safety implications of traffic control at road works and personal responsibilities
  • Set up, monitor and close down traffic control devices according to a nominated TGS/TMP, to WHS and legislative requirements
  • Operate a two-way radio correctly and effectively
  • Check, clean and store equipment on completion of work and close down a TGS/TMP
  • Know the basic function of the TGS/TMP system
  • Locate and apply required legislations, documentation, policies and procedures including documentation required for worksite projects and required traffic management
  • Locate and apply required legislation, regulations, codes and procedures including Austroads Codes of Practice and WHS applicable to temporary traffic management
  • Adapt to all work health and safety (WHS) and operational requirements
  • Use the site/location assessment, distinguish topographical landmarks and carry out authorised risk control
  • Conduct an onsite check of a TGS/TMP to identify any unexpected risks/hazards
  • Plan for emergencies that may arise
  • Ensure spacing between signs and traffic control devices is in line with a TGS/TMP
  • Understand speed, environment, type and class of vehicles, traffic density, sight lines, environmental conditions, weather patterns and surface type
  • Maintain traffic incident reports
  • Monitor traffic controllers


Upon completion of this programme you will receive the following units of Competency:


  • RIIWHS201D Work Safely and follow WHS policies and procedures
  • RIICOM201D Communicate in the workplace
  • RIIRIS301E Apply risk management process
  • RIIWHS302E Implement traffic management plans
  • RIIWHS303 Position, set-up and program portable traffic control devices


How Do I Become a Traffic Controller in Sydney?


To become a controller, you need to complete the necessary training through a registered training organisation (RTO). For the basic direction of vehicles using a stop/slow bat, you need to complete the standard controller program. If you want to implement road management plans, an additional course is needed.


For those who are interested in working exclusively as a traffic controller, obtaining both certificates may increase your chances of getting a job.


How Much Is a Traffic Control Course in Sydney?


NSW Traffic Controller course costs $247 and includes the SafeWork fee of $23.00. The course for Implement Traffic Management Plans is $297 including Safework Fees. The practical assessment costs $147.00.


Traffic controller and implement training is a combined three day course. Day 1 and Day two cover the theory components and features simulated practical exercises followed on day 3 by a live site assessment process which incorporates 3 direct observations across a range of scenarios Day 3 is typically at least one week later which allows for you to practice your skills under supervision in the workplace. With most classes set for 7.45 AM to 4:30 PM. During the course, students get a chance to take a break and have a meal.


Traffic controller as a stand alone course is a 1 1/2 day course because a participant cannot be trained and assessed on the same day. So you will be required to attend an assessment day where they can be observed at least twice undertaking traffic controller duties. If you were to run an implement course as a stand alone event the same would apply. However for implement the participants need to be observed on at least 3 occasions undertaking implement traffic control duties. The combo course is a 3 day event.


Individuals interested in completing both courses can save money by registering for both programs. The TC and ITCP combo costs $497.00 plus $147.00 for the practical assessment.


These programs require a refresher every two years. RTOs offer refresher training courses. These courses typically cost less compared to the initial training.


Do You Need a Training Card for Traffic Control in Sydney?


In NSW it is mandatory to hold a NSW SafeWork TCWT card to undertake Traffic Control duties in NSW. The NSW Safework issued training card does not expire, however you will need to refresh your training every 2 years.


There are no pre-requisites for this training, however if you wish to undertake traffic control duties in a construction environment, you will be required to have a white card.


The white card does not expire if you continue to work in the construction industry. However, it is best practice that you refresh every three years.


Why do you need a traffic control training card? Obtaining the card proves your competency in understanding the steps needed for assessing conditions. Australia’s road deaths continue to decrease each year, thanks to increased training and compliance with WHS legislation.


The classes are just one part of your requirements for helping to reduce road accidents and fatalities. Remember that you also need to obtain your white card before enrolling in the courses if you think you will be working in the construction industry. The white card covers the basics of conducting assessments and the steps to follow if an accident occurs.


What Qualifications Do You Need to Be a Traffic Controller?


To work as a traffic controller, you will need a NSW SafeWork TCWT card The card is obtained via successful completion of the program. Upon completion of the theory component you will receive an NSW SafeWork Certificate of Completion on the day, with the card getting mailed to your address in due course.


The classes teach you the skills needed to direct motorists using a stop/slow bat. A person, after successfully undertaking the training, can work supervised as a traffic controller to obtain work experience. Once the necessary work experience has been completed and the final live assessment successfully completed you will then receive your NSW Safework TCWT Card and be able to work in industry.


If you are interested in working as a traffic controller or need to obtain your training card for your current position, enrol in a nationally recognised traffic control course today.


AlertForce have a commercial auspice agreement with Admire Workplace Safety (RTO Code 91330) who are the registered training organisation who issue the certification for all NSW RMS approved traffic management and Nationally Recognised Traffic Control course delivered and assessed by AlertForce.

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