Prevost Welcomed its Largest Group of Mechanics and Technicians for Factory Training
(April 16, 2018; Sainte Claire, QC) — As they have since 2000, the Prevost Field Service Department along with the team of Regional Customer Support managers hosted 55 mechanics and technicians from throughout North America for five days in March during the company’s Annual Factory Training in Quebec City. The turnout this year was the largest since Prevost founded the vital program 18 years ago.
“Prevost has always taken a very direct, hands-on approach to maintenance training,” says Prevost Director of Aftermarket Training North America, Robert Hitt. “We relate directly with our customers’ mechanics and technicians who do the work on our coaches back at their shops.”
Testimonials such as this speak to Hitt’s point:
I want to thank the Prevost team for the fantastic hospitality in Quebec. Your team went over the top. The training team was very knowledgeable on questions I had and trained me on much I did not know. Just today I had an electrical issue that I resolved with the help of the training I received.
- Justin Liss, Gray Line of Tennessee.
Prevost says the week of intense maintenance training enables participants to build further on their technical and diagnostic insight, review recent product developments, and strengthen their own networks with other Prevost operators across North America. This event sets the pace for subsequent training sessions that take place at select Prevost Service Centers over the coming year.
“These coach mechanics bring their unique perspective in knowing just how to fix a problem once they’ve determined the cause.” says Hitt. “Their job takes a particular type of person who can get the picture and then dig in to fix what’s not working. The way we see it, these sessions also allow us to learn from the very people we train.”
Before getting down to business, first day activities included a guided tour of the Prevost factory, a visit to the newly-opened Prevost Museum for an enlightening look back on the company’s history, and some time to enjoy Quebec City. The week concluded with an awards dinner that recognized the three top-scoring attendees.
During that time, with books, agenda, contacts for the week and safety gear in hand, this year’s group of mechanics attended their pre-selected one- and two-day classes over four days of hands-on training with two Prevost instructors assigned to each class.
“We employ our regional service managers for this training, as they are our product experts,” says Hitt. “These are the go-to guys with the answers and solutions to all technical questions that arise.”
Prevost originally provided this training from the factory floor, but once the number of attendees outgrew the available space, the company teamed with a technical training school nearby to use its classrooms, complete with projection systems and training bays.
The Prevost Factory Training 2018 curriculum included:
Prevost Electrical – Prevost Multiplex and PRIME systems operation and diagnostics; on board diagnostics and troubleshooting; and schematic familiarization.
HVAC Systems – Component identification; HVAC controls; troubleshooting and system diagnosis
Volvo Drive Train – Volvo D13 emissions and engine evolution; PTT advanced diagnostics and troubleshooting; sensor location and ECU communication; valve adjustment and maintenance.
Pneumatic Braking Systems – Pneumatic system overview; system operation; maintenance and function; valves and operation; Bendix Knorr caliper.
Electronic Stability Program (ESP) – Automatic Brake System (ABS) and Adaptive Cruise Braking (ACB).
Accessory Pneumatic System –Suspension; kneeler; entrance door; high buoy and low buoy.
Transmission – Allison transmission diagnostics; troubleshooting; recommendations for replacement; I-Shift transmission familiarization and troubleshooting.
Greenhouse Gas – Changes to emissions; engine and coach systems; electric fan drive and charging system.
Throughout the remainder of the year, Prevost conducts its regional training seminars at select locations within its North American service network.
“We try to conduct one training session per year at each of our locations that can accommodate large groups,” says Hitt. “We can promote our branches, and we make it more convenient for our customers in those areas to take part in our training programs.”
Hitt says of the many important takeaways from all Prevost training programs, one for certain is the opportunity to establish the lasting relationships with like-minded employees from other areas of the country.
“This is something we encourage on the first day,” he says. “Because, that person in the next seat could well be the individual to contact if and when a driver has an issue with the coach in his region. Establishing these contacts after the training can be as important as attending the seminars.”
Prevost makes available all training materials from the sessions, and shares attendee contact information by permission with the class members.