It will be the first of its kind in the southern hemisphere.
It will be the first of its kind in the southern hemisphere.

Where to try Australia's first autonomous truck school

THE southern hemisphere's first Caterpillar autonomous technology training facility will be in Western Australia, Premier Mark McGowan has announced. 

He said his government had delivered $2.7 million to WesTrac and Bluewaters Farm Holdings to help get the trailblazing initiative, to be located at Coolangatta Industrial Estate at Collie, off the ground. 

The facility, located at Coolangatta Industrial Estate, will deliver training courses to technicians and operators of autonomous equipment.

Mr McGowan said people would come from all over the world to use the facility and expected clients to spend time in town as they undertook training, supporting local businesses and jobs. 

He said it would see Collie placed at the forefront of training workers - including local workers - in new technological skills for large-scale mining operations across the state. 

Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray said it wasn't about changing what mining looked like, it was about "allowing locals and people from across the state to be trained to work in industries in which there will be high demand in the future". 

"It will see Collie placed at the forefront of training workers in new technical skills in a rapidly emerging part of the resources industry," he said. 

The facility is expected to train about 204 students during the first year of operation and is projected to grow to 320 students in its third year, delivering training courses to technicians and operators of autonomous equipment and to support the growth of this technology in mining.

Having the facility located in Collie will position the town at the forefront of automated heavy vehicle training and has the potential to create a range of opportunities for Collie residents. 

Western Roads Federation is also working on an industry heavy vehicle training centre managed out of Collie. 

WRF boss Cam Dumesny said it was planned to open on July 1. 

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