ARCHIVED – National Energy Board Information Advisory – NEB IA 2012-01 – Survival & Helicopter Underwater Escape Training

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National Energy Board Information Advisory – NEB IA 2012-01 – Survival & Helicopter Underwater Escape Training [PDF 175 KB]

File: OF-EP-Gen-EPGen 02 01
29 June 2012

To: All Operators under National Energy Board Jurisdiction
Canadian Association of Geophysical Contractors
Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers
Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board
Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board

Subject: National Energy Board Information Advisory
NEB IA 2012-01 Survival & Helicopter Underwater Escape Training

The National Energy Board (the Board) has issued the attached Information Advisory regarding Survival & Helicopter Underwater Escape training expectations for offshore geophysical operations. The Board expects that this Information Advisory be given wide circulation to all relevant personnel within your organization.

If you have questions concerning this initiative, please contract Brian Nesbitt, Chief Safety Officer with the National Energy Board at 403-299-2771, or toll free at 1-800-899-1265 or email

Yours truly

Patrick Smyth
Chief Conservation Officer


Information Advisory

NEB IA 2012- 01
29 June 2012



This Advisory applies to operators intending to conduct geophysical operations under the Canada Oil and Gas Operations Act (COGOA) in the offshore areas regulated by the National Energy Board.


This Advisory outlines survival and helicopter underwater escape training expectations for operators conducting offshore geophysical operations.


Under section 35 of the Canada Oil and Gas Geophysical Operations Regulations (the Regulations), approval from the Chief Safety Officer (CSO) is required for survival training and helicopter underwater escape courses:

Format Table


Every operator who is conducting an offshore geophysical operation shall ensure that every member of the geophysical crew has successfully completed:

(a) a survival course approved by the Chief Safety Officer; and

(b) a helicopter underwater escape course approved by the Chief Safety Officer, where regular changes of geophysical crew by helicopter are planned


The Chief Safety Officer shall approve

(a) a course referred to in paragraph (2)(a) if the Chief Safety Officer is satisfied that the course will provide an adequate level of knowledge of the hazards and emergencies that are likely to be encountered on a vessel or platform that is engaged in a geophysical operation and of techniques for surviving those hazards and emergencies; and

(b) a course referred to in paragraph (2)(b) if the Chief Safety Officer is satisfied that the course will provide adequate training in the methods of escaping from a helicopter that is underwater.


The CSO must be satisfied that the training courses are adequate under subsection 35(3) of the Regulations. To clarify expectations, operators are advised that the following minimum training courses will typically be required for all members of the geophysical crew:

  1. For survival training, the Marine Emergency Duties Basic Safety Training (MED A1) or Basic Survival Training (BST); and
  2. For transport by helicopter, in addition to the survival course pursuant to (i) above, completion of Helicopter Underwater Escape Training (HUET) and Helicopter Underwater Escape Breathing Apparatus (HUEBA) training.

Training course requirements and recognized certificates for BST, HUET and HUEBA are outlined in the Canada Petroleum Producers publication “Atlantic Canada Offshore Petroleum Industry Standard Practice for the Training and Qualifications of Personnel” latest edition. The Basic Safety MED A1 training program requirements are contained within the Transport Canada publication Marine Emergency Duties Training Program - TP 4957. The onus is upon the operator to demonstrate course equivalency for any course program other than those specified in (i) and (ii).

For More Information

Questions regarding this Advisory should be directed to:

Brian Nesbitt
Chief Safety Officer
National Energy Board
Phone: (403) 299-2771

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