The Underwater Centre in Fort William has secured a 12 month contract, worth more than £275,000, to provide ROV pilot and technician courses to employees from Fugro.
This is the third year running that The Underwater Centre, an internationally renowned subsea training centre has been chosen to deliver the courses to Fugro personnel. In 2009, 75 students from the company will undergo ROV training - bringing the overall total of Fugro employees trained at the Underwater Centre to more than 200 since 2007.
Fugro, which is the world's third largest ROV operator, will send its staff from across the globe to The Underwater Centre.
Based at the head of Loch Linnhe, the Centre offers a unique sheltered, seawater site with a large private pier extending into the loch. The waters plunge to depths of 150 metres, which are ideal conditions for ROV training, as well as commercial diving.
Demand for ROV training at the Centre has rocketed - last year, 70% more courses were delivered compared with 2007.
The worldwide growth of ROV operations was highlighted in a recent report by analysts, Douglas-Westwood, which revealed that expenditure on work class ROV operations had more than doubled since 2002 and by 2011, $1.458billion will have been spent in this field.
Paul Bury, Head of ROV Operations and Training, at The Underwater Centre, who will be in charge of delivering the courses, said he is delighted to be working with staff from Fugro for a third successive year.
"We are very proud to be continuing our relationship with Fugro as they are one of the world leaders in the ROV industry," he said.
"Their confidence in our facilities, our training programmes and the expertise of our instructors' to assist and support Fugro in the delivery of part of their training programme underlines our success in delivering industry relevant training and standards.
"Our Centre offers students the chance to train in an industry specific environment so they are able to experience first hand the challenges and demands of being an ROV pilot technician."
George Robertson, Fugro Academy's ROV training manager, added to this: "We have been very impressed with the facilities and professionalism at The Underwater Centre. What makes it so special is the unique conditions for training which means that our newly-recruited ROV personnel, on completion of the course, are extremely well equipped to start working in the ROV industry."
The three week training courses, comprise electronics, electrical and hydraulics modules as well as intensive practical training on how to ‘fly' ROVs.