Training with the Spanish Coast Guard- SAESMAR

Towage Training with SASEMAR

By Ardent Salvage Master- Lars Tesmar

15th May, 2017, Ardent Contract Manager, Tjisse van der Meer and I packed up our bags for the Spanish Coast Guard (SASEMAR) training facility in Gijon to host a three-day training facility.

We had a class of 25 professionals awaiting. Roughly half of the class were Emergency Towage Vessel Captains, the others were shore-side support personnel. We knew that we would see some familiar faces from our partners at Ardentia Marine, but to our surprise we had a few veterans of the OLEG NAYDENOV deep-water oil removal project at the Canary Islands in 2015.

We regularly give this type of towage training to governmental marine agencies. We had three days, so we split it up to build the class towards a practical knowledge.

  1. General intro and case studies
  2. Theoretical towing refresher and theoretical towing prep for exercise
  3. Live execution of tow scenario

I was initially worried that the experienced captains would find the first two days boring. To my surprise, the participants spent much of the course comparing their techniques and helping each other out.

SASEMAR had drawn their ship captains in from all different parts of the country, and this ended up being their chance to all gather in one room and learn from each other’s experience. Shore-side personnel also discussed with the captains who they would usually only hear over the radio, and took the opportunity to streamline their operations.

The last day was smooth, and we were able to connect and disconnect the disabled vessels and practice the towage techniques: putting theory into action.

This exercise highlighted the need for agencies to draw their key personnel in from all corners of their respective countries. We all benefitted just as much from our coursework as we did from conversations that we had together, and the perspectives exchanged.

Muchos gracias to our Spanish hosts, and I hope to see everyone on calms seas! 

Participants prepare vessels for towing training.
Participants came from all around Spain, and ranged from shore-side personnel, ship captains to private contractors.
The author, Ardent Salvage Master, Lars Tesmar.
Ardent Salvage Master Lars Tesmar teaches a towage course in Gjion, Spain.


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