Enbridge Inc.

Enbridge Inc.

April 22, 2009 18:10 ET

Enbridge Provides Unique Training Program to Aboriginal People in Manitoba

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - April 22, 2009) -

Editors Note: Photos for this release will be available via Marketwire on the picture wire of The Canadian Press.

Enbridge Pipelines Inc. today announced that eighteen Manitoba Aboriginal people have completed an Enbridge sponsored initiative providing them with Heavy Equipment Operator training. This program is unprecedented in the Canadian pipeline industry. Enbridge is funding the approx. $450,000 program and Banister Pipeline, the main contractor for Enbridge's Alberta Clipper pipeline project, is donating equipment.

Twenty candidates participated in training that began March 30 and the 18 completing the course April 27 will receive accreditation and a job building Enbridge's Alberta Clipper pipeline project. Longer term, this training positions graduates for high-paying construction jobs after Alberta Clipper is completed.

Raymond Lavallee, Metis participant from West St. Paul, says that the training "will lead me to bigger and better things in life".

Steve Woods, a member of the Long Plains First Nation in south-central Manitoba, agrees.

"This has been a good experience - the training is top notch," he says. "I have a great future ahead of me," says Woods.

Leo Golden, Vice President, Alberta Clipper Project, says the program is a success for everyone involved.

"Enbridge is proud to fund this program and to collaborate with the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) and our construction contractor, Banister Pipeline, because First Nations leaders told us they wanted to partner with us on our Alberta Clipper project. Assembly of First Nations National Chief Phil Fontaine is working to increase participation by First Nations people in union organizations and we hope this program helps him with that national effort," says Golden.

"Thanks to the cooperation of Aboriginal communities, the IUOE and our contractor we're able to provide opportunities to individuals who may not have otherwise been trained," says Golden.

Jim Murphy, Business Manager of the Manitoba chapter of the IUOE (Local 987), says Aboriginals are an important part of the IUOE membership.

"The growth of our organization will depend on us training more minority groups," says Murphy. "Aboriginals will make up a big part of Manitoba's future workforce."

In late 2008, Enbridge funded another successful program to train approximately 20 First Nations people in entry level pipeline jobs. Enbridge and its partners are building on the successes of that initiative with this heavy equipment training.

The Operating Engineers Training Institute of Manitoba (OETIM) is providing the classroom and hands-on portions of the heavy equipment training course. Head instructor Rick Kouk says the on-the-job training prepares workers for a typical pipeline workday.
"We go 10 hours a day, 6 days a week. It's not because it's an accelerated course. This is what these guys can expect once they're in the field."

OETIM director Marc Lafond agrees.

"This is training in every sense of the word. It's not only about learning how to work the machines, we try to replicate the real world of heavy construction."

Each morning begins with a construction 'Tail Gate Meeting,' a few hours of classroom instruction and then 7-8 hours of hands-on training using contractor equipment. Instruction takes place at the OETIM training site in Winnipeg.

About the Alberta Clipper Pipeline in Manitoba:

The Alberta Clipper Project is a crude oil pipeline providing service between Hardisty, Alberta and Superior, Wisconsin. This 1,000-mile/1,607-km pipeline is expected to be in service by mid-2010. The Alberta Clipper pipeline follows the Enbridge mainline system right of way (a corridor containing existing pipelines) for most of its route. The $2.4 billion project is a major contributor to the Manitoba economy. About 286 km of the pipeline route is in Manitoba, running through the southwest of the province between Cromer and Gretna. Direct expenditures in Manitoba alone have been estimated at $200 million. It will create roughly 1,700 full time and part-time jobs during construction that will pay $67 million in labour income in Manitoba.

About Enbridge:

Enbridge Inc., a Canadian company, is a leader in energy transportation and distribution in North America and internationally. As a transporter of energy, Enbridge operates, in Canada and the U.S., the world's longest crude oil and liquids transportation system. Information about Enbridge is available on the Company's web site at www.enbridge.com.

Invitation to Training Facility and Contact Details

Media are invited to the training site for photo opportunities and interviews with trainees on April 23 as follows:

Thursday April 23

Between 8:30 am and 4:00 pm

Operating Engineers Training Institute of Manitoba (OETIM), located at St. Andrews airport on Highway 8, approx. 20 minutes from the Winnipeg International Airport

OETIM Contact:
Billy Elias
Communications Coordinator
Operating Engineers Training Institute of Manitoba / International Union of Operating Engineers Local 987
(204) 775-7059 ext. 28

To interview an Enbridge spokesperson and for all other Enbridge media inquiries, please contact:

Enbridge Inc.
Anne McIntosh
(403) 508-6563 or toll-free 1-888-992-0997
Email: anne.mcintosh@enbridge.com
Website: www.enbridge.com

For access to the high-resolution versions of these photos, please click the following links:




Contact Information

  • Enbridge Inc.
    Anne McIntosh
    (403) 508-6563 or Toll Free 1-888-992-0997
    Email: anne.mcintosh@enbridge.com
    Website: www.enbridge.com


    OETIM Contact:
    Billy Elias, Communications Coordinator
    Operating Engineers Training Institute of Manitoba/
    International Union of Operating Engineers Local 987
    (204) 775-7059 ext. 28
    Email: belias@oetim.com