Many will tell you that Offshore commercial divers earn in excess of £1000 day. Whilst that may be true for some, such earning potential is only realised after years of experience gained through hard work, usually starting Inshore, supporting civil engineering construction projects, shipping or inspection and maintenance programmes. Contracts vary from one or two days to weeks or months, all year round, with the majority of divers employed an a self employed basis. Working days are usually long, with only basic welfare facilities on site, and nights are often spent away from home, but the work is usually varied, camaraderie amongst the team is generally high and the skills learnt at CDT can be further developed, preparing the diver for their next step
The Renewables Energy Sector, although a relatively new industry, already has significant investment committed to its development over the next decade and beyond. Offshore wind farms, wave energy devices and subsea tidal turbines offer the diver further opportunities to add to his “tool box” of skills and techniques, all the time preparing him for the ultimate step into the Offshore Oil & Gas Industry. Many contractors operate a “month on month off” rotation, with divers possibly “retained” to ensure a regular team. The diving “season” generally runs from late March/early April through to November, with occasional short jobs over the Winter period.
Most new divers’ ultimate aim is to “dive on the rigs”. In fact most Offshore diving operations are based aboard DSV’s or undertaken from Daughter Craft (smaller RIB type craft, equipped with a surface supplied diving spread, launched from the back deck of a larger support vessel). Divers usually work 12 hour shifts, for up to a 28 days at a time. The optimum season is similar the Renewables Sector, with diving usually conducted round the clock .
In recent years Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) have taken over many of the traditional tasks undertaken by divers, such as routine cleaning and inspection of platforms, pipe line swims and deep water construction, however the majority of existing infrastructure was built with diver maintenance in mind, and there is often no viable/economical alternative to “manned intervention”, so for at least the next decade or two, the future of Offshore Diving is assured.
Do you have the aptitude, character and commitment to pursue a career as a Commercial Diver?