In the name of safety, Vestas, Siemens, Suzlon and other manufacturers are putting competition aside and joining forces. In cooperation with key customers the industry now works together on a safety training program.
Vestas is teaming up with competitors and costumers to make a standard for Basic Safety Training. This is done in the framework of the Global Wind Organisation (GWO), which Vestas started up in November 2009 together with competitors like Siemens and Suzlon and with several Key Accounts including SSE Renewables, Vattenfall and RWE Innogy.
“The renewables industry is progressing fast and with wind offshore in particular we enter a new and challenging business,” says Thomas Schuchart, Safety Engineer at RWE Innogy and member of the GWO Steering Committee.
“Now is the right time for joint approaches like this and we expect that it will be highly beneficial to all of us within the industry.”
The advantage for the costumers is obvious. Today, they must support the cost of training technicians in multiple different Basic Safety Training courses if they own turbines made by different manufacturers. In the future they only have to participate in one course if their manufacturers are members of the GWO. The same goes for subcontractors.
While safety is already a priority, Vestas benefits from the new standards.
“The course content is quite similar to what Vestas already has in place, but it will be more comprehensive. Today, in some areas of Vestas, documentation, when it comes to the skills of our external course providers, is not good enough. With the new standard, we set clear expectations to the providers,” says Safety Specialist Lars Odby, who is also member of the GWO Steering committee.
The Basic Safety Training Programme is now finalised, and a test trial of the different modules has just been conducted.
“We are aiming to make the best basic training, incorporating already known standards. We are getting a lot of great, constructive feedback, and it has just been a major team effort,” says Philip Hill, HSE & Education Coordinator in Vestas Offshore.
The outcome of the testing is now being incorporated in the course material and the Basic Safety Training Programme is expected to launch in the first half of 2011