Determined to survive the current global oil crisis, BP plc and Maersk Training remain focused on producing a competent and skilled workforce. The two European oil companies have entered a 5-year contract in which Maersk Training will train BP’s offshore rig crews. The training will take place at Maersk’s new state-of-the-art training facility in Houston, scheduled to be in operation in late 2015.
“With the new center, we can offer BP a virtual reality-environment where most of the simulators are interlinked allowing training of an entire offshore operation,” Maersk Training CEO Claus Bihl said in a written statement. “We can hereby simulate what happens if an emergency takes place with extensive focus on human factors, communication and decision-making along with training procedural discipline in well-specific environments. BP is taking a holistic and integrated approach to training that will help enhance capabilities across the offshore oil and gas industry.”
The new training facility, which will be located near George Bush International Airport, will embrace drilling, maritime operations, engine room simulations, crane operations training and emergency operations management.
Since opening its advanced simulation facility in Svendborg, Denmark, Maersk Training has seen a lot of interest in this type of advanced simulation training.
“This has led to a dialogue with BP in which BP now has signed a five-year contract to use our new facility in Houston to train integrated offshore drilling teams – comprised of BP employees and contractors – in what [BP] calls an ‘immersive simulation environment,’” Jacob Petz, managing director of Maersk Training in Houston, told Rigzone. “The hands-on, scenario-based approach goes well beyond traditional classroom training. It allows teams to practice events and joint procedures together as an integrated unit, rather than as individual contributors.”
Maersk Training has doubled both its training centers in the past three years and is now offering training locally at facilities in 10 of the global maritime and offshore production hubs in the world.
“Despite high focus on costs, the industry does not compromise on safety, and the companies continue to upscale competencies of their workforces with increased attention on the importance of operational performance improvement and overall quality and well-specific training,” Bihl said.
Regarding Houston being selected as the location for the new facility, Petz told Rigzone that Houston is a very important hub for the entire oil and gas industry and a natural growth step for Maersk Training, which BP has supported with the 5-year contract.
“These programs are a step forward in the training and development of BP’s offshore personnel and of the many contractors who support our global offshore oil and gas operations,” Gary Jones, head of BP’s Global Wells organization, said in a written statement. “We hope the entire offshore industry benefits from this important collaboration.”
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