Winter 2019

SAT-isfaction guaranteed

JFD is set to establish a leading global closed-bell diver training programme in the UK which will ensure high-level safety qualifications for saturation divers around the world.

The centre, at Fort William in Scotland, will provide divers with the opportunity to combine saturation (sat) diver training with several features that weren’t previously available on closed-bell diver training courses.

The closed-bell mixed gas saturation qualification is the highest level of HSE certification a diver can reach. It qualifies divers to work for long periods of time at depth, using all the techniques and safety measures available to prevent decompression sickness. 

In addition to this, divers will receive emergency escape training using a self-propelled hyperbaric lifeboat (SPHL); practical gas reclaim training (where JFD’s industry-standard equipment is used to reclaim the heliox gas mix breathed by divers); and training on JFD’s new commercial diver rebreather system, COBRA.

This introduces them to some of the critical safety systems they can expect to see when they commence their saturation diving career.

The new venture has been made possible by JFD’s recent acquisition of the closed-bell sat diving system and associated assets of The Underwater Centre, which was one of only two in the world to offer closed-bell training to divers. When the centre closed in 2018, there was no longer provision in the UK for saturation diver closed-bell training, which presented concerns for the industry. However, JFD’s comprehensive training package which will be up and running in early 2020, heralds a whole new approach towards the safe, reliable and sustainable provision of crucial training for the worldwide subsea industry.

Steve Ham, JFD’s new head of commercial service sales (and formerly commercial director of The Underwater Centre) says:

‘The future of the global offshore and subsea markets is in part dependent on the ability of saturation divers to conduct complex and demanding inspection, repair and maintenance operations in what can be extremely challenging environments. We are going to need commercial divers for many decades to come. It is clear when you consider the increasing stability and return to growth of the industry plus the considerations of an ageing workforce, that there is a strong need for a training capability which fulfils the need for new well-trained saturation divers to enter the profession.

‘This new sat course will ensure that the highest standards in safety are always maintained while introducing divers to modern safety practices such as the use of SPHLs and gas reclaim systems,’ he adds.

JFD’s strength and experience in subsea engineering and training services, coupled with the involvement of key personnel previously involved with delivering the course, means students from around the world will be introduced to safety equipment not previously available in any saturation course. It will give new sat divers a superb start to the next phase of their diving career and JFD’s ongoing support will ensure safe development of their career in the diving industry.

Close Bell Diving System Acquisition infographic

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