HR Course Information

Watto Training – HR Info Sheet

Watto Training delivers heavy vehicle training (MR, HR, HC & MC), using vehicles owned by Ian Watson’s Driver Training Centre.

Training is conducted from 19 Blyth Road, Murrumba Downs Q 4503 unless alternate arrangements have been specifically made.

We can prepare learners for driving tests in classes (MR, HR, HC, MC) at the following Transport and Main Roads Customer Service Centres:

  • Redcliffe
  • Strathpine
  • Caboolture
  • Zillmere

Q: What options do I have for HR training?

A: There are 2 pathways for the HR class:

HR (open)

The open licence which means you can drive any HR. If you choose this pathway you need to train and be assessed in a non-synchronous transmission. This is a form of based on gears that do not use synchronizing mechanisms. The non-synchronous transmission type requires an understanding of gear range, torque, engine power, range selector, multi-functional clutch and shifter functions. You will be required to use a double-clutching technique for gear changing. (see below for more information on double-clutching)

HR (B)

The B restriction licence means you drive HR vehicles with synchronous transmissions, (nicknamed synchros) as well as a automatic vehicles. You will not get a licence to drive a heavy vehicle with a non-synchronous transmission if you choose this pathway.

Q: Do I have to do a driving test to get my HR licence or can it be done by competency based assessment?

A: WATTO TRAINING conducts training in MR, HR and HC to prepare a student for a driving test with a TMR examiner. Only the MC (multi-combination) is competency based at this stage. Competency based training and assessment will come into all classes of the heavy vehicle in the future on a national level, but at this stage there is no fixed date as to when this will occur.

HR (open) Specific Information

Q: What is double-clutching?

A: Double-clutching (also called a double declutching) is a driving procedure primarily used for vehicles with an unsynchronized manual transmission. (NB: truck drivers in unsynchronized manual transmissions will often not use the clutch at all when driving but for the purposes of a driving test in Queensland you must use the clutch).

The double clutching technique involves the following steps:

  • The throttle (accelerator) is released, the clutch pedal is pressed, and the gearbox is shifted into neutral.
  • The clutch pedal is then released, the driver matches the engine RPM to the gear RPM either using the throttle (accelerator) (when changing down) or waiting for RPM to decrease (when changing up) until they are at a level suitable for shifting into the next gear.
  • At the moment when the revs between engine and gear are closely matched, the driver then instantly presses the clutch again to shift into the next gear. The whole maneuver can, with practice, take no more than a fraction of a second, and the result is a very smooth gear change.

If you have not changed gears using this technique prior to training, do not be alarmed. We have trained many people from scratch who have successfully passed a driving test and gone on to work in the transport industry.

Q: What sort of trucks do you use for crash-box training?

A: Roadranger gearboxes in 2 x Mitsubishi 15 speeds and an Isuzu Gigamax 18 speed

Q: How many lessons will be required?

A: It varies from person to person, but as a rough guide…

  • 4-6 hours: experienced truck drivers with significant crash-box experience
  • 6-8 hours: experienced truck drivers with an some crash-box experience
  • 8-12 hours: some truck driving experience and some experience at double-clutching
  • 12 + hours: people with no truck driving experience and who may need that extra time to undergo training towards driving skill that will pass a Q-Safe driving test.
Q: What does HR Crash-Box hourly rate training cost?

A: Lesson fees are $110/hr, pay as you go. If you can’t make your lesson please call 0412 986 419, if no one answers, leave a message (or send a text) so we know you’re not coming. No shows with ‘no notice’ before 4pm on the Friday before shall incur a $55 fee to cover our expenses.

(NB: some people take more if they do not have significant experience driving heavy vehicles. We can assess you on your first lessons to give you an idea of how many lessons you may need)

Q: What is the test day fee?

A: $330.00 (includes government booking fee of $50.50. For tests Monday to Friday, this fee includes a one hour warm up before the test).

Deposit to secure test time and location: $150.00 (NB: this is non-refundable unless 5 working days notice is given, and is a condition under which training is under taken with each client. The balance of $180.00 is paid on the test day prior to the warm up session).

HR (B) Specific Information

Q: I’d like to know more about HR synchromesh training (B restriction)?

A: This class gives you a restricted licence; also called an HR licence “B” restriction. It means you can drive HR vehicles which are automatic or synchromesh only. You will not get a licence for HR crash-box (ie. non-synchromesh).

Q: What are the training and assessment options for the HR (synchro) B restriction?
  • Hourly training at $110.00 per hour, then a lesson and test fee of $330.00. It also includes the booking fee. It does not include the learner’s permit. The learner’s permit is the responsibility of the LEARNER to obtain in their own time. This package is good for people who want to take their time with training, or who may be experienced drivers and may not require the package deals. As company policy we require drivers to have a minimum of 5 hours of training before the test if they are experienced drivers. (This includes the one hour warm up before the test).
  • One Day HR synchro course: $850.50 package includes a total of 6 hours of training, plus the use of the vehicle for the test (one hour). It also includes the booking fee ($50.50). It does not include the learner’s permit. (the only down side to this package is that there is no scope for extra time if require, and secondly some drivers have felt fatigued by the time the test starts. If this is a concern then we suggest a 2 or 3 day package). This package is not recommended to inexperienced truck drivers. NB: This package factors in time for morning tea, lunch breaks and toilet breaks. Students can either bring lunch or purchase it during the course.
    • Start time of 6:00am at Murrumba Downs for a 1:10pm test. (lunch breaks included)
    • Start time of 8:00am at Murrumba Downs for a 2:50pm test. (lunch breaks included)
  • Two Day HR synchro course: $850.50 package (includes booking fee) with 2 options….
    • Option (a): 4 hours of training on day 1, then on the test day 2 hours of training and the test.
    • Option (b): 5 hours of training on day 1, then on test day 1 hour of training and the test.
      • NB: Learner’s permit not included in price
      • Does not have to be two consecutive days
      • Additional hours are charged at $110.00 per hour. The trainer will provide feedback to you if you should require additional training
  • Three Day HR synchro course: $850.50 package includes the government booking fee but not the learner’s permit. Typical structure….
    • Day 1: 2 hours
    • Day 2: 3 hours
    • Day 3: 1 hour warm up, then one hour test
      • NB: does not have to be three consecutive days
      • Additional hours are charged at $110.00 per hour. The trainer will provide feedback to you if you should require additional training

Other General HR Training Information

Q: Do you do refresher training in the HR?

A: Yes, at the hourly rate.

Q: Do I need a learner’s permit for the HR?

A: If you are graduating from a car licence to a HR licence, yes. If you already hold an LR or MR licence, no.

Q: How do I get a heavy vehicle learner’s permit?

A: Go to your local TMR and pay the required fee of $20.80, and answer 10 multiple choice questions.

Q: How do I study for the learner’s permit?

A: Click the LICENSING link at www.tmr.qld.gov.au and follow the links to the practice heavy vehicle questions. You can also buy a book to study if you do not use the internet from TMR or your local news agency.

Q: Can I start training without a heavy vehicle learner’s permit?

A: Yes. You can even do the practical driving test without a learner’s permit, but you will not get your new licence unless you have successfully completed both the learner’s questions and the driving test. (NB: this must be arranged in your own time)

Q: If I get a HR licence do I get an LR and MR licence as well?

A: Yes.

Q: How do I know if I am eligible for my desired class of licence?

A: WATTO TRAINING can offer advice but if you want to check to confirm that you are eligible for a particular class of licence then you should go to Transport and Main Roads or call 13 23 80. (Operates Monday-Friday 8am-5pm excluding public holidays).

It is a condition of training and go for a test through WATTO TRAINING that the learner takes 100% responsibility for their eligibility to do a test. This includes overseas students, SPERs issues and medical issues such as diabetes. The $150.00 deposit paid to WATTO TRAINING IS NOT REFUNDABLE if we go for a test and find out when we get there that you are not eligible. The $150.00 will cover WATTO TRAINING’s expenses for the government booking fee and WATTO TRAINING running costs.

Q: Can I graduate from an automatic C class licence to a manual truck licence eg open or B restriction?

A: Yes. But you MUST demonstrate proficient at changing gears and using the clutch smoothly in a manual car first. If you need some basic training it can be done from Murrumba Downs in a manual driving school car at a rate of $55/hour.

Q: How Long Does the Test Take to Complete?

A: The following table sets out the average on-road test times for each licence class:

Licence Code Average On-road Test Time
RE and R Not more than 35 minutes
C and LR Not more than 35 minutes
MR and HR Not more than 70 minutes
HC Not more than 80 minutes
Q: What Do I Do After I Have Passed the Practical Driving Test?

A: If you are the holder of a learner licence and are applying for a provisional licence for the first time, you are required to pay a licence fee.

If you are already the holder of a Queensland provisional or open licence, you will need to give up your driver licence so that new driver licence showing the new class of licence may be issued to you free of charge.

Note:      Ensure that you remove each L plate from your vehicle before you leave the centre.

Q: What If I Fail the Practical Driving Test?

A: If you fail the test, it will be a disappointing result. Your trainer will go through your result with you and come up with a plan as to how to address the issues that occurred in the test and begin setting your sights on doing the test again.

Q: How Many Practical Driving Tests Can I Take?

A: You may take as many tests as is needed, but you are only allowed to take one test in any given day. It will also cost you for each test.

Q: What is the test day procedure?

A:

  • Make sure you have paid any outstanding driving fines.
  • Meet a trainer at 19 Blyth Road, Murrumba Downs – unless otherwise arranged for a one hour warm up session before the assessment.
  • Bring your licence.
  • It is a requirement to arrive at the Test Centre 10 minutes before test time
  • Hand in completed yellow application form and driver’s licence at Transport Department.
  • Read “A Message from your Driving Examiner”.
  • Go out on test with examiner.
  • While on the driving test the examiner is required to give clear and early directions. At times examiners will chat with you, and other times they may remain quite. Don’t allow nerves or the examiner’s personality put you off the task at hand which is to drive safely and obtain your licence.
  • When the test is completed the examiner will discuss errors with you and then inform you if the test was a pass or a fail.
  • If you pass, you will receive a new licence from the customer service centre when the paper work has been completed (usually 5-10 min). If you fail, then another practical test will need to be done.
Q: How will I be assessed?

A: You will be assessed on the following key elements of driving a heavy vehicle:

  • Pre-drive checks;
  • Manoeuvres – reversing exercise (left and/or right);
  • Gear changing;
  • Hill start;
  • Specific driving situations;
  • Vehicle operation skills;
  • Hazard recognition and decision making skills.
Q: How long will the test go for?

A: The on-road driving test times for the different heavy vehicle licence classes are:

  • LR – 25 to 35 minutes
  • MR and HR – 60 to 70 minutes
  • HC – 70 to 80 minutes.

Unless the test is terminated for any reason, the minimum drive time will be 25 minutes for a class LR test, 60 minutes for MR or HR test, and 70 minutes for an HC test.

Uncontrolled and unpredictable events such as road works and traffic crashes may affect the duration of a test.

Q: I wish to book, what do I do next?

For more information, please contact us.

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