WEST Opens New Drilling Equipment Center

WEST Engineering Services opened its Drilling Equipment Center( DEC), a hands-on training facility, in Brookshire, Texas.

The combination of the most significant increase in the offshore rig count in decades and an aging oilfield work force has resulted in the current shortfall in skilled personnel. As new rigs progress from construction to operation, this personnel shortage will continue to intensify. In response to this need and recent client discussions, WEST has committed to provide a series of training courses. These courses are designed to progress candidates with both fundamental mechanical skills and a desire to become offshore professionals from their current knowledge and experience to a solid basic skills entry level offshore mechanic.

The key to this program is curriculum integrating engineering principles and hands-on experience with equipment types commonly used on drilling rigs. Class sizes are limited to assure optimum student/ instructor ratio. Held in WEST’s new 33,000 square foot DEC, the courses utilize an incremental approach to training. With 10,000 of this exclusively dedicated to training, the Drilling Equipment Fastrac Training (DEFT) series will include the full range of required knowledge, from industry basics to high-tech equipment repair. Dual-focus (academic and practical) training is recognized to result in quicker, higher knowledge retention, a fast track to skilled mechanics. The classroom portion will be held in the purpose built 1,350 square foot facility, complete with 14’ video screen and individual laptops for experience in report writing.
Several courses have been completed and scheduled for the 3rd and 4th quarter 2008, including:

  • Drawing, Schematics and Symbols
  • Measurements, NDE and Fasteners

Other courses in various stages of development include:

  • Ram and Annular Blowout Preventers
  • Marine Drilling Riser Systems
  • Iron Roughnecks
  • Top Drive Systems
  • Subsea BOP Controls Systems

Each module is developed by experienced subject-matter experts working with professional curriculum development professionals. The courses address many new directives and standards issued by various industry bodies, including MMS Safety Alert No. 249. Issued in February of 2007, it notes that the MMS had issued 42 training related incidents of noncompliance to 27 different operators in the last five years. A majority of these noncompliance issues were based on operators’ failure to conduct an adequate evaluation of their contractors’ training plans, or operators’ failure to verify that their contractors’ personnel were properly trained.

Company specific custom-courses are also available for those wishing to address particular training needs.

For further course schedule and more information about these innovative drilling equipment and systems courses, please contact Tom Bishop at 281-375-5515 or visit http://www.westengineer.com/training.htm.