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Drilling simulator facility helps boost safety for Norwegian oil and gas industry

19 March 2019

Significant investment in a state-of-the-art drilling simulator training facility is helping develop human factors and boost skills across the Norwegian oil and gas industry.

Over the past seven years, Fagskolen i Hordaland, which is located in Bergen city centre, has trained hundreds of students and oil and gas industry professionals in drilling and well control operations at its bespoke simulator facility.

The $multi-million, 180m² facility is one of Norway’s most advanced simulation centres for drilling and has been developed in close consultation with the drilling industry to ensure it meets the sector’s skills and competency demands now and into the future.

As well as a large Drilling Systems’ DrillSIM:6000 simulator suite, the centre features two associated rooms where up to 25 students can observe and analyse simulation scenario via immersive displays.

These facilities help students learn about drilling and well control operations offshore by enabling them to practise real-life scenarios using the simulator. Students experience all the movement, sounds and operations of a real offshore rig and this highly immersive training enhances learning and understanding to ensure people are better prepared for the workplace.

As well as training the workforce of tomorrow, Fagskolen i Hordaland works with oil and gas companies to ensure crews are fully competent and well prepared for live operations.

“Following a number of high-profile well control event on the Norwegian continental shelf over the past few years, the focus on crew training and the human risk factor is becoming increasingly important for operators and contractors. We have heavily invested in our simulator facility to ensure workers in the oil and gas industry are trained to the highest possible standards and are fully competent to cope with the challenges of working in the field.”
Jørgen Eriksen, Head of Petroleum, Fagskolen

One of Fagskolen i Hordaland’s clients is Odfjell Drilling which regularly puts its crews through crew resource management (CRM) training to prepare for drilling operations, develop human factors awareness and ensure the highest safety levels. The well-specific training scenarios enable Odfjell’s crews to practise a wide range of advanced drilling operations such as well control, stuck pipe, jarring, managed pressure drilling in a safe and controlled environment so that the field personnel are trained to respond effectively.

"Safety is our highest priority so regular team-based training courses where high-risk operational scenarios, that could never be replicated on the job, can be practised in complete safe environment to ensure our personnel are better-prepared for the field. Simulator training at Fagskolen i Hordaland is the most efficient way of keeping crews’ skills at a consistent high standard."
Rune Mesel, Manager Operational Compliance, Odfjell Drilling