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Winter is coming: are your diving safety standards ready?

Winter is coming: are your diving safety standards ready?

Health and safety standards are just as important as ever. DBE (2)

Make sure you’re prepared for winter


“Winter is Coming…”

It’s a warning repeated again and again in Game of Thrones. The diving industry would do well to remember it too.

Historically, the UK HSE Diving Inspectorate plans its operator visits around the quieter winter months.

These checks ensure: risk management processes are being followed; plans are in place for foreseeable emergencies; and that companies and individuals demonstrate competence and are suitably qualified and equipped to cope with the major hazard risks involved in offshore diving.

The HSE will expect you to be prepared. It’s time to be vigilant and ensure your regulatory compliance and industry documentation is up to date.

Failure to meet regulations can result in fines or even prosecution for your business (not to mention that the consequences of failing to meet these standards can be even more tragic).


Cutting back to survive can’t mean compromising safety

In 2020, our diving industry faces yet another challenging period. Downturns inevitably mean businesses find a way to cut costs as they adapt to survive.

It’s the same story in each downturn – in ‘85, ‘99 and then the last slump five years ago – companies tightening their belts means deferring projects, vessels laying idle and reducing headcount.

Leaner workforces mean losing experience and competence. We’ve already seen several offshore oil and gas companies announcing job reductions this year. For the commercial diving sector this means skills fade and harsher contracting strategies.

It’s essential that coming through the other side of this pandemic isn’t at the cost of competence and a safe diving environment for all.


Helping you get ready

At Archer Knight, we’ve built up our diving technical consultancy and services to provide proven industry competence and expertise. This is based on decades of North Sea and international commercial diving management experience – across both operators and contractors.


We offer:

  • Offshore duty holder diving management reviews (ODDMR) – we help to interpret specific ODDMR requirements, complete questionnaires and prepare presentations for virtual meetings.

  • Bespoke diving safety management systems – we help develop operator- or client-specific systems, perform updates and revisions to existing documentation, reviews and recommendations for improvements.

  • Competence assessments – it’s essential that operators get the right person, in the right role, at the right time. We are developing a robust competency assessment process which will provide a pool of individuals skilled across a range of disciplines, with a recognised accreditation.

We can also help with procedural reviews, hazard identification and risk assessment (HIRA) support, operational reviews, and invitation to tender work scopes.

Get in touch to discover more about our professional diving technical services, safety, and support, conducted in the Covid-safe environment of our Aberdeen premises.


For more information get in touch here

Derek Beddows is the Director of Diving Safety & Services at Archer Knight.