Professional helideck training is a requirement in almost every sector (e.g oil and gas, renewables and the superyacht industry) and is designed to equip operators with all the necessary knowledge, understanding, and skills needed to perform the role of an offshore helicopter landing officer (HLO) and/or offshore helideck assistant (HDA) safely and effectively.
Mandatory courses focus on all aspects of dealing with a helicopter landing and take-off. This includes the management of the helideck, passenger and cargo handling, plus emergency response training and dangerous goods by air awareness training. Regular competency assessments are also conducted to ensure training and newly acquired skills are put to best practice. The aim is not only to reduce risk and improve safety in the workplace but also to build confidence within the crew and help them perform to their full potential.
But, what are the main advantages of helideck training? And why is it such an important activity? This blog post explains.
Ensuring helideck operatives’ safety
The primary reason for conducting helideck training is to ensure the safety of the crew and any other staff members involved in helicopter operations.
At HCA, our aim has always been to improve regulations and safety for helideck operatives. We achieve this by constantly monitoring regulations, providing our own comprehensive eLearning course, carrying out competency assessments, and accrediting global training providers.
Training helideck operators to spot issues early
Another benefit of comprehensive helideck training is that it trains operatives to be extra vigilant in order to identify potential issues earlier on. This allows them to take action quickly, in order to prevent further escalation. For example, spotting and fixing a fault or being aware and reporting substandard conditions that could lead to an emergency situation later down the line.
Understanding the regulations
At HCA, we have up-to-date knowledge of all helideck regulations and we’re constantly looking for ways procedures can be improved.
Having a solid understanding of helideck regulations and the standards for offshore helicopter landing areas is vital in order to ensure operatives are working in the safest possible way and is a large focus for many professional courses.
Dangerous goods awareness training
Learning how to handle dangerous goods and transport items safely is another important part of helideck operations and training.
It’s the reason why, at HCA, we have a world-renowned Dangerous Goods Awareness eLearning course, which has been expertly put together in order to benefit new recruits as well as staff who have been in the industry for decades. Our course satisfies the prerequisite requirement for OPITO Helideck Operations Initial Training (HOIT) standard, so you can be sure that you’re meeting all the official criteria for these roles.
Utilising the correct PPE
Helideck operatives are required to wear high-quality personal protective equipment (PPE) for their role(s). This includes purpose-made safety items, such as ear defenders, gloves and protective eyewear appropriate for specific tasks (e.g. refuelling).
An accredited training course will cover all PPE requirements in detail, providing operatives with in-depth knowledge to keep them safe whilst working on the job.
Comprehensive emergency training
Another important reason crew attend helideck training is to ensure they are capable of responding appropriately in emergency situations. They must understand and be practised in executing requirements for different types of emergency response systems and controls during a helicopter incident. This can include anything from dealing with fires to utilising hand signals to communicate when radios are ineffective/not working.
Preparing a helideck for movement
An approved training course will help to ensure your crew is able to correctly prepare the helideck for landings or departures. Such training is often centred around best practices and safety guidelines because an incident is most likely to occur when a helicopter is arriving and/or departing.
A lack of knowledge in this area could have very negative consequences. This is why we offer competency assessments for our clients to check that training and skills are put into practice.
At Helideck Certification Agency, we pride ourselves on improving helideck operations and regulations in the UK and across the globe. Our team has years of experience and is always on hand to answer your questions.
So, if you would like any more information or advice regarding helideck training then don’t hesitate to get in touch today.