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Commercial Diving Q and A Forum

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Posted : November 11, 2008
I have recently been made redundant and as there is not a lot of job opportunitys in the job market these days that pay well i thinking about doing the premium const course at fort william i would like your advice on this .I am 44 years old and worked in the mines rescue for a number of years the main reason for my question is am i to old to think about a career in commercial diving

Posted : February 17, 2009
You will be pleased to hear that the average age of a North Sea diver is 49! And with a number of commercial divers, specifically saturation divers, coming up for retirement, there are ever more opportunities available to you.

The Premium Package Course at Fort William will maximise your employment prospects and includes HSE commercial diver training providing you with an excellent base for your diving career and qualifies you for inshore and offshore air diving. In addition to this you will be given comprehensive skills training, enabling you to undertake a wide range of work in construction and inspection. You will receive non-destructive testing and welding and burning training, along with the practical instruction in the use of underwater tools. The Premium Industry Career Package will increase your job options, making you the ideal multi-skilled employee, helping you gain valuable skills experience and making you stand out to employers.
Answer provided by Ali MacLeod, The Underwater Centre

Ali MacLeod
Additional Comment

Posted : February 22, 2009 by - Sea-dweller
Those 49 year olds in the North Sea having been in the industry for 20 years.

What kind of BS advise are you giving?

A 44 year old baby diver will have little chance of getting work, the lies being told by your school are terrible, are you still telling every one on the phone the world is crying out for Divers?

Additional Comment

Posted : February 23, 2009 by - Ali MacLeod

The message intended to put across in the reply was that at 44 you can still be a diver. 44 is not old. We're in no way suggesting that you need to be in your 40s to work in Sat. Agreed, lots of those divers have been there since their 20s, but not all of them. When people ask about statistics for the industry it's easy to use the North Sea as an example because accurate statistics are available from there compared to other parts of the world and the UK inshore industry. But not all diving takes place offshore. There are opportunities onshore also for those who aren't interested in going offshore.

If you were a diving contractor, why would you give an opportunity to a newly qualified diver who was 24 for example and little opportunity to a 44 year old? What age would someone be considered too old? In many ways a more mature person has more to offer on a work site than a young person. I know people who have entered diving in their 40s and have gone on to work in saturation too. They face the same challenges breaking into the industry as everyone else does, but if they've got what it takes they'll most likely succeed. I must say I used to think the same way, but I've been proved wrong. Maybe this comes from the old fashioned idea that diving is just for young people, I don't know. People can change their career at any time these days. I think it would be up to the industry to decide what the cut off point would be as far as age goes and not individual opinions.

Last year was a boom year for the diving industry, especially offshore and that's good news for divers. So much so that many contractors were worried about the number of people getting offshore quickly and with relatively little experience. We don't promise that anyone will get work, but we do what we can to prepare them. We don't lie to people. We tell people not to expect to leave school and go straight into a job in the North Sea.

We'll see what the global economic crisis does this year, but that'll not last forever.

Appreciate your comments.
Additional Comment

Posted : February 23, 2009 by - Sea-dweller
Ok Ali I will try and be a little more constructive

The only time you ever mention about inshore/civils Diving is in a rebuttle after a working Diver like myself has critised your school about some of the mis truths you tell.

If you are serious that a 44 year old can make it as a new start then dont spout on about the North Sea as this is clearly sales pitch.

If your Diving school was Government funded, there is no way on earth a 44 year old guy would be taken on, but as you are a business you would be more than happy to take this guys money knowing full well he has little chance of making a good career.

On to the bolt on packages, how do they give a new start an edge?? When every one else on his course will doing the same package and so will the last 10 courses before him.

Please dont tell me, its because he will leave the school with more logged dives, or its what the companies are after, as this is tripe.

Perhaps if you had been more honest to the guy and many others instead of sounding like a used car sales man you would get less grief from the guys in the industry.

To the guy that made the original post, I am sorry if this has seemed like an attack on you that was not my intension.
Additional Comment

Posted : March 1, 2009 by - ozzy
this is for sea dweller loved your reply prefer people that are honest and straight talking i'm about to take the alst course i'm 44 ex seaman recreational diver with 450 dives the question is what's the chances of me getting work ball to bone!!
Additional Comment

Posted : March 11, 2009 by - Young Gun
i recently did my course at fort bill and agree with everything sea dweller says.
Additional Comment

Posted : March 15, 2016 by - subsea
Hi sea dweller, I read the post you wrote in 2009 in response to a mans inquiry about diving. I too am considering a career move into diving but for me it is a huge financial risk and I will be starting a potential diving career in debt. I would appreciate an honest response from someone who is active in the industry as I have read that around 80% of divers get work within the first three months of course completion and I have also read that 90% of new divers don't renew there second annual medical. The current situation is that I don't know what to believe and I don't yet have any contacts in the industry so id really appreciate your opinion.
Additional Comment

Posted : April 13, 2016 by - LDCDiver
Hi this is a comment for subsea, whereabouts are you based? if you're looking for advice and to make contacts from people in the industry, LDC Training in central London runs weekly DMT and ALST courses so there's always a group of working cdivers milling about, all of whom are almost always friendly and happy to chat. The team that runs the course are also ex sat divers, give them a call or pop in (trust me they'll be happy to help, website is the ALST course also gives a great initial foot on the ladder in the industry and an opportunity to learn more... might not be what your after but thought it might help!

Good luck,
Additional Comment

Posted : June 13, 2016 by - Fergee
Hi Subsea.. Just wondering if you have had feedback from your post last month? I too am looking at getting my commercial tickets but am unsure about the best route.. Especially as it's very expensive imo.. How have you decided to go about it? Thanks..
Additional Comment

Posted : July 6, 2016 by - Cmyers27

First of all, glad to join the diving community in this forum.

I have found that the best way to get started in diving in the oil and gas industry is to begin by having a look at an oil & gas specific job board and seeing which roles are available. In my opinion, it's important to use a job board as you maximize the number of jobs in one place, and avoid missing any great opportunities...saves you time endlessly scanning the internet for the best jobs! The oil & gas job board at the moment with the most jobs listed is so it may be worth giving that a try as a starting point. Once you have a good idea of the type of jobs which are available for your skills, tailor your resume to emphasize the points which would be relevant. Then simply start sending your resume off for the jobs you like the look of (you just need to register/upload your CV once and you can apply for as many jobs as you like).

I hope this helps!

The views expressed by the author are their own and the publishers accept no liability for the advice and views expressed by the author, or other users, which are provided as a general service to divers. Users are warned that secondary posts are the views of other users and may not be technically correct.
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