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A Friday Note - 9 December 2016

CONNECT - Message from the Chief Executive

Dear all

While we are yet to see scorching temps this summer and cloud is still shadowing our skies, the UV index is reaching extreme. A reminder to all staff to be sun safe – slip, slop, slap still holds true.  


A recent safety walk at Walkley Heights has unearthed a hidden gem – the Urban Construction and Bridge Maintenance Shed. The team recently relocated there, setting up new safe systems of working including ergonomics, tidiness and an emphasis on PPE. White Ribbon promotions are front of sight and mind when walking into the shed, reinforcing our commitment to safety both on and off duty. Matt Elliot and Charles Matuhina received a perfect score during the safety walk. It is exactly the kind of approach that is well deserving of the CEO’s award for Safety Performance of the Year. Well done to all involved.


We are also launching an award for innovation. Current contenders include Mark Shotton, James Cox and the team behind Addinsight which is revolutionising the way we inform drivers about traffic delays. There are also people such as Eleanor Freeman, Mei-Lin Schwarz and Karl Woehle who came up with the idea of MetroMate as part of their graduate project. At our Littlehampton maintenance depot, Glen Huckins is well-known for ‘Oscar’ which he designed, built and is improving to reduce the repetitive manual handling task of raking leaves. And how about Matt Ridley from Ferry Ops whose trailblazing work on engine and power systems has slashed fuel consumption, maintenance and associated costs.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. If you or someone you know is doing great things in our department, send me the details.


Major construction works have started on yet another one of our big projects as Northern Connector gets off the ground.

A sod-turning ceremony was held this week to celebrate the milestone, as well as the immense benefits the project will have for SA jobs and local businesses.


I recently joined other DPTI staff for an outing on land and by sea to witness the freight operations that take place at Port Adelaide. More than 9.5 million tonnes and nearly $14b of international trade moved through the port last year, supporting thousands of jobs in South Australia. An extraordinary sight to behold.


Last chance to have your say in the Employee Climate and Culture Survey 2016, which closes at 5pm today. If you haven’t shared your feedback, please don’t miss this valuable opportunity. 


If you know that one of our colleagues is away sick or on recreational leave please do not contact them unless you have their specific approval to do so.


We come to that time of year where gifts and hospitality may be extended to DPTI employees. The department holds a centralised gifts and benefits register to declare all gifts or hospitality over the value of $50. If in doubt please speak with your General Manager.


We are continuing to gather up Christmas goods for the Hutt St Centre. Donations of essential items to help those less fortunate will be collected until December 15. They can be left in the RMH foyer and the Library on level 12, Grenfell St.


Stuart Beaumont Hart, who was SA Director of Planning from 1957 to 1983, recently passed away at the age of 93. He was one of the most influential town planners of his time and was the architect of the first comprehensive planning system in the state. He will be missed by the planning fraternity of South Australia, including many here in our department.

Our sympathies also go out to the loved ones of Bob Virgin, who was a long-term employee in the road construction and road maintenance areas of DPTI and its previous forms. Those who knew Bob describe him as a great colleague and a true gentleman.


After 46 years of dedicated public service Richard (Dick) Matheson, DPTI Network Control, will be retiring today. Dick’s impressive career commenced with the South Australian Railways on 18 November 1970 learning ‘number nicking’ as it was called then; manually collecting railcar numbers of trains departing the station and phoning them through to train control. Thank you for your service.


Colossal effort by Marco Linsalata and his team who’ve successfully co-located Electrical Assets with Field Services at Walkley Heights, enabling them to work more efficiently together. 12 months of planning, hard work and collaboration with the property section transformed the old survey building on Bridge Road into a modern workplace to be proud of.

Marco’s unit completed all electrical works, providing the opportunity for an apprentice to meet some of his mandatory training requirements.

We commend the work of Abigail Walters who was a key member of the across-Government team set up to run an exercise at the State Emergency Centre yesterday to test our responsiveness to an earthquake in Adelaide. Some 100 people attended the event and worked through a scenario. Many learnings are expected to flow for all agencies including DPTI.

Last Friday, our public transport staff attended a seniors’ forum at Aldinga Shores Retirement Village led by Minister Leon Bignell. Despite some initial concerns from the crowd, our people were quick to address any issues by sharing their wisdom about the services we offer. I’m told the Minister was most impressed by our expertise.

Well done to the three high school students who recently completed work experience with us. It’s another great initiative to support entry level recruitment pathways.

Congratulations to Woodville High student, Kiaasha Anno, who‘s among ten promising pupils from across the state to receive the DPTI Walpaara Anpa Award this year.

Have a good weekend

Michael Deegan