Norway-based risk management and sustainability services provider Det Norske Veritas (DNV) has launched new training courses in offshore SAFETY, with the aim of reducing the risk of accidents and improving safety for elected safety representatives (ESRs).

DNV’s new courses have been accredited by industry skills body OPITO for more than 2,000 ESRs in the offshore industry.

The next batch of courses has been scheduled to begin in August 2013 at DNV’s offices in Aberdeen, Scotland.

The new courses will help ESRs to develop their effectiveness and confidence to independently manage their functions and powers, including investigating potential hazards, dangerous occurrences, complaints and the causes of accidents, as well as the inspection of installations.

DNV senior consultant Fiona FitzGerald said: "It’s been fantastic to hear from safety reps who, after attending the course, are returning and telling us stories of how they’ve been able to immediately apply the learning to their next trip offshore."

"It seems to have opened up a new dialogue between installation management and safety reps – with increased respect and understanding from both sides," FitzGerald added.

"Our focus is firmly on the management of major accident hazards and we’ve heard how alumni safety reps are now better equipped to understand the technical content of their installation safety case and challenge assumptions."

The Offshore Industry Advisory Committee’s (OIAC’s) Workforce Involvement Group, the Health and Safety Executive, Oil and Gas UK, Step Change in Safety and trade unions have supported DNV’s new courses.

DNV Aberdeen advisory services associate director Robert O’Keeffe said: "Safety representatives hold an important role and can have an influential impact on safety across the workplace. This new ESR training will help those in the role develop the skills and understanding to improve the safety culture for all."

Image: DNV headquarters in Norway. Photo courtesy of Haros.