Survival Systems Training Hoists Its MAST

From offshore oil and gas exploration to navy shipbuilding, $122 billion in major projects is happening in our region and Survival Systems Training Ltd. is riding the crest of this wave. The company has just opened a new Marine Aviation Survival Training (MAST) facility in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

” MAST allows workers to train in extreme environments, both safely and repeatedly,” said John Swain, CEO of Survival Systems Training Limited (SSTL).

Imagine you’re in a helicopter on a dark and stormy night, heading to an oil rig 300 km offshore. Fog has blown in on 100 km/hour winds, creating 1.8 metre high waves, and the captain has just said, “Brace for impact.” This is just one of many emergency situations the $6 million, state-of-the-art training facility can recreate.

“Having invested significantly in research, our trainers are able to teach people how to achieve the best possible outcomes in a catastrophic emergency,” continued Mr. Swain.

The new training pool measures 25 metres by 14 metres by 5 metres deep. Swain says the intensity and scale of MAST’s wave technology, with directional wind and rain generation, is unmatched in the world. The facility also features a replica ship hull, rescue hoist, and fast rescue craft capsized simulator.

sstl_mast2Driving SSTL’s growth is bringing in export dollars. More than half of its customer base is from outside the region. In the last 12 months, the company has led a customized safety training operation in Korea for Exxon Mobil, preparing its crews for a drilling expedition off the coast of Siberia.

Mr. Swain views the Halifax Gateway as a two-way portal; bringing international companies here and promoting made-in-Halifax solutions on the world stage. “The Halifax Gateway is a champion of increased trade and our business is a leading example of a Nova Scotia company exporting technology to global opportunities,” remarked Mr. Swain.

Over the past two decades, SSTL has trained 100,000 people from around the world, 50,000 at the Dartmouth facility. Clients include Shell, Suncor, Husky, EnCana, Environment Canada, Canadian Forces, and Ornge-Ontario’s Air Ambulance, to name a few.

Located in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, SSTL delivers upwards of 70 safety and survival training programs for the aviation, marine, land-based industrial, military and offshore industries. The company has 27 employees.