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IMCA Assistant Life Support Technician
Salvador Figuueroa Gonzalez
Mexican Salvador Figuueroa Gonzalez recently attended The Underwater Centre, Fort William’s IMCA Assistant Life Support Technician (ALST) Course. Flying in from Mexico especially to complete his training, here Salvador tells us more about his subsea career to date.
A successful career as an Assistant Life Support Tech
39 year old Salvador Gonzalez from Veracruz in México completed his schooling, attended university and graduated as, surprisingly, a dentist. He then chose a career in the exciting subsea sector after a successful application to be a trainee Assistant Life Support Technician (ALST). He has worked in the industry for 14 years now and really appreciates the pay packet his career has allowed him to enjoy. The only downside is the time he has to spend away from home and his family, as he is married with two children. On the upside the job does give him long spells at home in between shifts.
Working as an ALST for a large offshore and inshore construction company
Salvador enjoys the challenges of his job and has been working for a large Mexican based company which is part of the Protexa Group. The Protexa Group is made up of a number of individual companies who have been responsible for a huge number of offshore and inshore construction projects.
Salvador was recruited fresh from graduating and began training as an ALST in 2001. His training was both on- and offshore and after 2 years as an ALST he was promoted to Life Support Technician (LST) and then finally to Life Support Supervisor (LSS). After 14 years working in this field Salvador then decided to gain an external verification of his ability by starting on the certification pathway towards an IMCA qualification.
With a great deal of years working in this field Salvador is hopeful of progressing quickly through the certification process. However, he now realises the importance of continuous external training and assessment, so that all logged hours completed at work can count towards an IMCA qualification.
Training you for the job, not just the ticket
Salvador found the IMCA Assistant Life Support Technician training at The Underwater Centre to be excellent and had this to say about his experience; ‘The course was excellent from the knowledge imparted, instructors, practices, facilities; all of a high standard.’
To further enhance students’ experiences while on course, and to add to the realistic training provided, the Centre has incorporated an introduction to a Self-Propelled Hyperbaric Lifeboat (SPHL) – the lifeboat itself was recently donated to the school. This SPHL introductory course has been added to both our IMCA ALST and HSE Closed Bell Courses.
Including experience of the SPHL into these courses will ensure students who graduate from The Underwater Centre are continuing to receive practical, hands-on training, preparing them for real life situations they may have to deal with when working.