BOC Hydrogen People: Meet Jill Cawley, Senior Driver Trainer

Posted by BOC

Meet Jill Cawley, Senior Driver Trainer

Welcome to BOC’s ‘Hydrogen People’ blog series. In each edition, we tell the story of a team member who plays a vital role in driving our organisation’s hydrogen journey. From production to storage to transportation, every step of the hydrogen value chain is delivered by specialist experts who understand how to help our clients adopt hydrogen as a replacement for fossil fuels.

Jill Cawley is a Senior Driver Trainer who has been part of the BOC team for 23 years. She travels around BOC sites to deliver driver safety training. “Drivers are trained to recognise hazards”, she explained. “They carry out a pre and post inspection on their trailers and report any issues via an app. The app also monitors their driving performance on a daily basis.”

Jill started out as a driver herself and moved into management via BOC’s Driver Development Programme. In fact, she was the first female driver to drive bulk tankers for BOC!

In-depth driver hazard training

Driver training goes beyond standard ADR training. When Jill trains drivers at BOC, she also trains them on the hydrogen product, the trailer and safety protocols, for example, how to create an exclusion zone for the emergency services, should this become necessary out on the road.

“We train our drivers in dynamic risk assessment”, said Jill. “They won’t deliver if it’s unsafe.” Equally, if there any issues on-site, the driver will stay until these are resolved.

Safe hydrogen delivery

Safe hydrogen delivery

In Jill’s experience, clients are greatly reassured by BOC’s emphasis on safety, and often ask for guidance on how to safely receive a delivery of hydrogen. Jill recalls a particular site access check for a large customer, where the health and safety rep was unsure how to carry out a hydrogen risk assessment. Jill spent time with the client, providing understanding of hydrogen, the delivery vehicle, and making recommendations about on-site safety measures.

“For other clients it’s a case of doing what we do so well they don’t actually know very much about it!”

Reducing risk

Everything Jill and her team do is about reducing risk: to the client, to other motorists, and to the driver.

If a driver has been absent more than 13 weeks, they must repeat their training before being allowed to drive a hydrogen trailer again. There is a detailed process both at the departure and arrival points to check the vehicle and the bay for any issues or defects. Designated driving routes are documented on the app, and these are regularly altered in case of a security incident.

Reducing risk
BOC people working together

BOC people working together

Drivers have direct contact with BOC’s team of engineers, so there is always back-up if there’s an issue with a delivery trailer. This builds a strong sense of camaraderie in the team, which has proved vital many times, such as during the Covid pandemic when BOC assisted the medical industry. “Drivers cancelled their time off and worked their maximum hours to make sure we delivered oxygen to hospitals”, said Jill.
In Jill’s view, it’s essential that everyone now does their bit in flying the flag for hydrogen: “We all have a role to play in the promotion of hydrogen and its importance in a cleaner more sustainable future.”

We are BOC. Our people know hydrogen.

Speak to BOC about hydrogen and decarbonisation