Subsea training facility launches new ROV course

Paul Boughton

Subsea training facility, The Underwater Centre, Tasmania, is responding to increased worldwide demand for skilled ROV personnel by offering a new course designed specifically to cater for the oil and gas industry.

As spending on ROV work class operations in the global sector is forecast to grow significantly over the next four years, the Beauty Point Centre has produced a calendar of dates for ROV courses for 2014.

The three week ROV Pilot Technician Course was developed at its sister operation in Fort William, Scotland, where the success of training competent ROV Pilot Technicians for the global oil and gas industry has been such that it is now being rolled out in Tasmania.

Meanwhile, Energy Analysts Infield Systems Limited forecasts that the Australasian offshore market is likely to require more than US$40bn of investment over the 2014-2018 period (Source: Offshore Australasia Oil & Gas Market Report), an increase from US$22bn over the previous five years and largely driven by the rapidly expanding LNG market.  Vessel demand, including ROV services, is also expected to increase significantly going forwards.

ROV pilots in the southern hemisphere are currently commanding day rates which are among the highest in the world, ranging from AU$920 for a trainee to AU$1,840 for a Supervisor.

ROV Industry union AMMA issued recommended day rates between July 2012 and July 2013, showing a 5 per cent increase on the previous year, reflecting recent movements in other relevant offshore oil and gas industry labour markets, such as offshore construction, rigs, diving and, vessel operators.

The Underwater Centre, Tasmania, will launch its first ROV Pilot Technician Course of 2014 in February, with more scheduled to take place in May, July and October. They have been specifically timetabled to run alongside the commercial diver training also offered by the Centre, to provide ROV pilot technicians and diving students with first-hand experience of working alongside one another.

The Underwater Centre, Tasmania, was set up to address the need for well-trained commercial divers in the South East Asia Pacific region in the early 1990s.  The Centre’s expertise and experience in commercial air and mixed gas diving operations means that it is best placed to offer courses that meet the needs of industry.  Along with its sister school in Fort William, Scotland, it provides internationally accepted diving certification (ADAS from Tasmania, HSE from Fort William).  The Underwater Centre’s key objective is to help deliver a competent workforce for the global oil and gas market.