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Gaining your panel hours in the required time frame

July 2018 marked KBA Group’s 16th year anniversary of providing diving and marine safety consultancy and training services to the offshore and inshore industries. Being the recipient of Historical Diving Society (HDS) 2018 Leonard Greenstone Award is an accomplishment of the contribution that KBA has provided over the years of operation.

In today’s world of ‘Return of Investment’ and ‘Personal Development’, it is great to see some individuals seeing the advantages of taking the next step forward to develop their careers. Over the period of 30th June to 2nd July, KBAT had its first bell supervisor attend the Simulator Training for Saturation Diving Supervisors.

Brett Proudman, working as OCM / Client Representative, wanted to keep his ADAS certification in date with regard to panel hours for bell diving supervisor. To this end he decided the most efficient and cost effective way was to undertake 20 BDS Simulator panel hours using KBAT’s newly installed simulator. The training consisted of an initial 2 hours familiarisation followed by 18 hours of dives simulating all the routine stages of a regular saturation dive, starting with bell checks, dive planning, toolbox talk, pre-dive panel & control room checks, reclaim set-up, transfer of divers, bell checks, bell launch, dressing in the divers, diver lockout, proceeding to the job, undertaking the task, return to bell, diver lock in, bell recovery and TUP of the divers.

Additionally, introducing simple mechanical or electrical failures, such as communication failures or loss of flow to analysers gradually increasing in severity as the training progressed, through to all the full emergency scenarios that hopefully, a diving supervisor would hope not to experience in a lifetime of supervising, such as unconscious divers in the water, umbilical entanglement or DP ‘run off’.

Brett Proudman commented, “The course was efficient, compact and well set-up. Alan was great! He was very good at making the whole exercise flow, not an easy exercise as it was the first course.”

Alan Rhodes, Head of Diving Training Department commented, “The simulator is a great tool for refreshing those skills which have been lost through moving into more senior positions and not getting the panel hours in like Brett, or for preparedness for the unexpected. When you are on the panel and the instructor starts introducing simple faults or more complex scenarios, the pressure really starts to build up and it feels like you are actually out on the job, though fortunately, if something goes wrong, divers’ lives are not at risk. The scenarios which can be simulated are endless.”

Simulator panel hours count as double actual panel hours as per IMCA D 013, therefore, Brett’s 20 simulator hours equate to 40 hours offshore panel hours. As this was the first time the simulator has been used by someone to complete his panel hours, it has shown that the system does work and can play a great advantage to those wishing to complete their panel hours, but find it challenging to do so while offshore. The simulator may also be used for a ‘Return-to-Work’ training and assessment whereby individuals may not be working for a period of time or to practise emergency drills and scenarios prior to commencing a project.

For further information to discuss how to kick start on this simulator training, or to develop your emergency subsea pipeline response into virtual reality and how this can save you time and money in your response preparedness, please contact KBAT at

Tel: +65 6542 4984

Or visit our website at:

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