News story

Falck first to deliver groundbreaking training initiativein the Middle East

Aberdeen, UKLearning NewsAtlas

Falck Safety Services has become the first company in the Middle East to gain approval to deliver a groundbreaking new global training initiative for the oil and gas industry.

The safety training provider's Abu Dhabi centre is the first to meet the stringent criteria set by learning and skills specialist Atlas to invigilate the International Minimum Industry Safety Training (IMIST) e-learning programme, a global initiative developed to drastically improve safety standards for the offshore workforce worldwide.

Developed by global oil and gas training standards body OPITO International, IMIST online is delivered in partnership with Atlas via approved invigilation centres only.

The Falck centre, in Musaffa industrial city, has the capacity to offer training to around 1,300 oil workers each month. With an estimated 460,000 people in the Middle East currently employed in exploration and production activities, the centre is expected to be used by companies across the region.

IMIST brings for the first time a standardised level of basic safety training to an estimated 1.5million oil and gas workers worldwide. The training, which was launched in the Middle East in July, assesses basic safety knowledge in nine subject areas including risk assessment, asset integrity, the use of hazardous substances, working at height and mechanical lifting among other subjects.

By gaining Atlas approval to deliver the course, workers using the Falck centre will have their IMIST training accepted by employers all over the world. It will also reduce the burden of training costs for companies with both new entrants and experienced workers able to undergo a full range of mandatory and voluntary health and safety courses under one roof.

Tahnoon Karim, UAE business development manager at Falck Safety Services, said: "As the largest offshore training safety provider, it was important for us to be the first centre to offer this groundbreaking training. Atlas' approval provides independent and world-wide recognition of the quality of our delivery and we are delighted to be the first company to have met the criteria and achieved this honour.

"A key regional centre, the facility in Abu Dhabi will provide companies operating across the Middle East with a time and cost-effective way of accessing the new IMIST course and a wide range of other industry health and safety training, ensuring the workforce is best equipped to operate in the safest and most efficient way possible."
OPITO group chief executive David Doig said the accreditation was the first step towards raising the bar on safety and workforce competency globally.

"IMIST is an important element of assuring a common standard of competency and this accreditation is a clear step forward towards achieving a step-change in the health and safety culture of the Middle East and meeting the target of reducing risk and making sure workers can return home safe at the end of each day."

Atlas chief executive John Rowley added: "There has been a great deal of interest from training providers who want to deliver this groundbreaking global safety standard in their centres around the world. Using an invigilated environment ensures the online course is being delivered at the high level the industry demands and we are delighted that Falck has become the first centre to gain approval in this key region."

IMIST is being rolled out across 30 countries worldwide throughout Asia, Africa and North America over the next two years. It will be delivered via e-learning and tailored to meet each region's specific workforce, language and geographic needs.


Notes to editors: