SAQA All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.
SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Maintain ballast 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
120032  Maintain ballast 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Civil Engineering Construction 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 12 - Physical Planning and Construction Civil Engineering Construction 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This unit standard does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
The qualifying learner is capable of:

Maintaining ballast works in accordance with the correct profile and specifications, by calculating ballast quantities correctly, screening ballast by hand and off-loading ballast in order to replenish ballast.

This Unit Standard will contribute to the full development of a professional community of Rail Construction and Maintenance workers.

The skills, knowledge and understanding demonstrated within this Unit Standard are essential for social and economic transformation and upliftment within the Rail Construction and Maintenance environment. 

LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
It is assumed that learners are competent in the following:
  • Mathematical Literacy at NQF Level 1.
  • Communication NQF Level 1.
  • Use of materials and components in rail construction and maintenance. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    The typical scope of this unit standard:

    Competency must be demonstrated:
  • In different weather and environmental conditions.
  • Preferably in daytime.
  • In different yard layouts/mainline/sidings/private sidings/shed/workshop (might or might not include overhead traction and Railway signalling).
  • Within a specific time span.
  • Different site conditions, e.g. cuttings, embankments, multiple lines, tunnels, sites with restricted accessibility etc.

    The learner should prove competence in the maintenance of ballast on all types of railway track.

    Ballast maintenance work will be performed under supervision of an accredited subject matter expert.

    The supervisor will be responsible for the taking and cancellation of all occupations. 

  • Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Prepare for ballast maintenance. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Relevant information pertaining to the type of material and location is obtained and interpreted from relevant document. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Quantities are calculated accurately. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    A work plan detailing time frames and resources is compiled from the work plan. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Material, tools and equipment are obtained and verified for correctness. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Relevant role-players including team members are informed and made available. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Relevant personal protective equipment is identified and applied correctly. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 7 
    Appropriate protection is afforded in accordance with procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 8 
    Work environment is safe guarded in accordance with regulations and procedures. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Screen ballast by hand. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Ballast is screened correctly to prescribed depth. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Drainage profile is maintained correctly. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Ballast is off-loaded in accordance with safe working methods and procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Ballast is boxed in accordance with specifications. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Sleepers are tamped correctly and safely according to specifications. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Ballast is trimmed according to correct profile. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Replenish ballast. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Off-loading is prepared including the examination of truck doors. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Ballast is off-loaded in accordance with safe working methods and procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Ballast is boxed in accordance with specifications. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Ballast is trimmed according to correct profile. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Complete post-maintenance operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Quality of completed work is verified and appropriate corrective action is taken where required. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Basic measurements are performed in accordance with procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Work site is restored and cleared as per instructions, including removal of fouling matter. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Protection is withdrawn in accordance with procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Environmental regulation are adhered to during maintenance process. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Relevant documentation and reports are completed accurately and legibly. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 7 
    Role-players including team members are informed of their roles and duties. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this Unit Standard must be registered as an assessor with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this Unit Standard must be accredited as a provider with the relevant ETQA.
  • The relevant ETQA would be responsible for moderation of learner achievements of learners who meet the requirements of this Unit Standard. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
  • Code of Practice 29
  • Ballast profile dimensions
  • Temperature ranges
  • Ballast off-loading procedures
  • Tamping and screening procedures
  • Box-in procedures
  • Quality requirements and specifications with regard to ballast works
  • Relevant environmental regulations and legislation
  • Health, Safety and Housekeeping procedures and regulations
  • Reporting and documentation requirements and procedures 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    Learner and societal development

    Learners can understand the importance of:
  • Safety in the workplace.
  • Being a team player in the work environment, organisation and in society.
  • Economic impact of rail track operations. 

  • UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Learners can solve problems with regard to:
  • The correctness, quantity and quality of tools, equipment and materials.
  • Failure of equipment.
  • Temperature ranges/weather.
  • Availability of resources.
  • Non-availability of other departments.
  • Quality of ballast maintenance. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Learners can work effectively with others and in teams when:
  • Relevant role-players are informed and available.
  • Allowing other departments to perform their functions.
  • Ballast is off-loaded and/or screened. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Learners can organise and manage one self:
  • By observing and assessing work area to determine if work can proceed.
  • When informing team members of hazards in the work area.
  • When calculating quantities. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Learners can collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information by:
  • Preparing to maintain ballast.
  • Assessing if the ballast profile is in accordance with specifications.
  • Verifying quality of completed work. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Learners can communicate effectively by:
  • Completing relevant documentation.
  • Communicating with relevant parties for example, subordinates, technical personnel, etc. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Learners can use science and technology by:
  • Using equipment to box ballast and tamp sleepers. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Learners can understand:
  • Impact of insufficient quantities or inferior quality of ballast on track.
  • Impact of maintenance operations on the environment.
  • Importance and purpose of ballast as integral part of rail track. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

    REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this unit standard was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    N/A 

    QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Elective  49795   National Certificate: Rail Construction and Maintenance  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Reregistered  2023-06-30  TETA 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.