Svitzer introduce a Portable Simulator in the UK – by Jack Gaston
Major towage operator Svitzer has for some time carried out simulator training for tug crews, either in various training institutions or more recently using their own facilities.
In Britain the in-house simulator was used extensively in Milford Haven and has been transported to various ports in the UK and abroad as required. On each occasion the equipment has needed to be dismantled and reassembled for transportation. Following a recent decision, the simulator has now been installed in a standard 20 foot ISO container.
The new arrangement enables the simulator to be moved easily by road or sea when required. A specialist company, Pentalver (also part of the parent AP Moller group), was called upon to advise and undertake the work. Pentalver has a great deal of experience in converting containers for various uses. They tackled the job with great enthusiasm and succeeded in producing a good workable solution.
The simulator is now installed permanently in the container suite, leaving sufficient space for a teaching and de-brief area. Most of the simulator equipment, including the hard drives are permanently set up and firmly secured. Only the display screens will require packaging prior to transportation, an operation that takes all of five to ten minutes. Air conditioning has been installed to ensure the facility can be maintained at an optimum working temperature.
The simulator suite can now be transported to any Svitzer location, requiring only an adequate space within the grounds or on a jetty, and a power supply. Should it be necessary to transport the simulator suite by sea it meets all the necessary requirements.
This mobile training facility will now tour the UK and be lifted on and off a trailer using the truck’s own crane. Over the last two years this simulator, in its original state, was used in the UK and the Netherlands to teach the handling principals of an ASD tug to crews. Training programmes have been developed for both beginners and experienced personnel, and that includes escort work. Qualified Training Masters will always accompany the suite.
The next few years are likely to see an increase in the demand for the simulator and it will prove to be a valued tool for those starting out as trainee Masters. It will also continue to be put to good use with experienced Masters at the controls. All ports will agree their simulator training needs with a central coordinator. Using this information, decisions will be made as to where the suite is most needed and for how long.
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