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APPENDIX D COMMlENTARY ON GAINING This discussion of training is based largely on Section D of Safety and Operational Guidelines for Undersea Vehicles, published by the Marine Technology Society in 1974. However, training should require the development of criteria or standards for an acceptable level of competence of crew members in all their responsibilities. This is usually referred to as "competency-based" training. BASIC INDOCTRINATION Indoctrination can be accomplished in a variety of ways ranging from a formal course to on-thejob training. The program would be dictated by the size of the class, the time and equipment available, and other related factors. Regardless of what type of program is used, the use and personal maintenance of a pilot's or crewman's notebook are strongly urged. This notebook should be initiated at the outset of training and be maintained as long as the individuals are engaged in submersible activities. The notebook should contain such things as lecture notes and handouts, system descriptions and sketches, design criteria, written examinations, ship characteristics, personal observations, etc. Basic indoctrination must be designed and controlled to ensure that candidates possess as least a good working knowledge of the following as applied to their vehicle system: . submersible principles, ballasting, thrust control, environmental control; · submersible construction, mechanical systems, electrical systems, propulsion systems, life support systems, buoyancy emergency systems, hull and structural materials, buoyancy materials; . control systems, communications, navigation systems, operational instrumentation; · all operational and emergency procedures; · physiological parameters and safety considerations required in the closed environment of the submersible cabin; · all test principles and procedures; · maintenance, overhaul, and documentation requirements and procedures; · Coast Guard rules and regulations as they apply to passenger submersible operations; · the ocean environment in and on which the submersible will operate; and · first aid as taught by the American Red Cross or a branch of military service (this must include a current cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification). In general the candidate should become completely familiar with the basic concepts, physical hardware, and principles of operation of every system and subsystem of the vessel. Written and oral examinations should be regularly given to determine the effectiveness of the training program. 101
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OPERATIONAL TRAINING Operational training should start with a maintenance apprenticeship on the actual vessel. This apprenticeship should probably be concurrent with classroom work and should track the normal work activities of the operating team. The candidate would be expected to understand and use checklists to conduct the routine inspections and required maintenance, under the direction and guidance of the maintenance chief. At the same time the candidates should be exposed to the work environment and the overall operation. They should be assigned tasks involving the observation of actual dives, communications, tracking, etc., during normal operation~lways while under the guidance of qualified team members. In this manner, useful experience is gained and the trainee acquires confidence in the system and himself. Additionally, this period should be used to further evaluate the candidates and to provide any supplemental instruction that may be needed prior to advancing to the final apprenticeship phase under the chief pilot. The final apprenticeship phase is intended to provide a candidate with the actual on-thejob training under real conditions that will provide sufficient knowledge of his vehicle, the environment, his support and handling equipment, and procedures to be able to accomplish his mission in a safe and competent manner. This phase begins with in water familiarization and training and extends through complete ocean training leading to solo operation. As the candidate progresses he should be given increased responsibility including, in the case of pilot trainees, early hands-on control of the vessel under supervision. When the pilot candidate is considered ready for qualification he should be able to demonstrate his ability to: · maneuver the vehicle on the surface, while diving, in mid-water, and on the bottom, while remaining in full control at all times, perform obstacle avoidance course changes, demonstrate the precision control required during the course of normal operations, and be able to surface under normal and real or synthesized casualty conditions; · to operate all equipment normally installed on or associated with the submersible; · supervise all support activities and functions such as communications, tracking, operational replenishment, and any other activities associated with operation of his particular organization; · perform all emergency procedures including the solving of life support system emergencies that might occur in the cabin while submerged; and · provide passenger management during both normal and emergency situations. A similarly comprehensive training program is recommended for all submersible operational crewmen. The variables in vehicle design and specific job assignment make the itemization of skills impossible here; however, the owners or operators are responsible for ensuring that the candidates are sufficiently trained and have demonstrated their proficiencies in the assigned job. QUALIFICATION It should be noted that no attempt has been made to specify the number of hours that this training should require. It is believed that the variables involved make any such attempt presumptuous; however, the length of the training course or individual training activity should be long enough to provide confidence that the trainee has achieved the required skill level or established standard of performance or competency. Satisfactory completion of a course as outlined above should be sufficient to qualify a person as a pilot or crewman of that submersible. The qualification should remain in force as long as the pilot is engaged continuously and actively in the piloting or crowing of the submersible and is able to meet the required physical criteria. Periodic retesting of skills is not thought to be required for those continuously engaged in piloting or crowing. Retraining and refresher checkouts are appropriate should any lapse of continuous submersible activity exceed six months. Qualification as a submersible pilot or operating crewman should be for only that specific vehicle in which the qualification was demonstrated. The only possible exception to this policy would exist in the 102
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case of sister vessels. It should be noted, however, that an experienced pilot or crewman has an excellent background to call upon should training in another submersible become necessary. This background could be expected to result in significantly shorter training times than might otherwise be required. SUPPORT TEAM Thus far, only the selection and training of submersible operating crews have been addressed. It is in those roles that the physical requirements, psychological stresses, and individual training requirements are highest. However, the rest of the operating team—the submersible support group~ust not be taken for granted or ignored. The satisfactory performance of the mission and the ultimate safety of the submersible depend in large measure on the performance of these people. The team leader is in charge of the overall operation. He need not be a qualified pilot but he must be intimately familiar with all aspects of the total submersible system. He must be a leader, dependable under stress, and capable of instilling confidence in the team. The support crew must be a well-drilled and competent team. Each person should be a volunteer selected on the basis of expertise in a specific discipline related to the submersible and his ability to function as a team member. Where specific skills are required, such as welding, hydraulic system repair, and electronic servicing, the technician should be adequately trained and, where applicable, licensed (i.e., certified welder). 103
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