Release date: 27 February 2019

JFD nominated for Offshore Achievement Awards 2019

JFD, the world leading underwater capability provider serving the commercial and defence diving markets and part of James Fisher and Sons plc, is proud to announce that it has been nominated for the HSE Innovator award at this year’s Offshore Achievement Awards (OAA) for its Compact Bailout Rebreathing Apparatus (COBRA).

The HSE Innovation award is designed to identify and recognise new technological ideas, developed within the UK, for the offshore energy sector. COBRA will be judged on several factors, including its improvement on individual, plant or operational safety.   This follows their win at the Subsea UK Awards in February which JFD were awarded the Innovation for Safety award for COBRA.

Until now the industry standard for the provision of emergency breathing gas has been limited to just a few minutes, depending on the method employed and the diver’s operating conditions. This poses a significant risk, particularly when working in extreme conditions. Indeed there have been incidents that which have resulted in near-misses and could easily have become a fatality purely as a consequence of inadequate emergency breathing gas supply. It is a critical industry challenge that cannot go unanswered. 

In line with this, and as a direct response to the urgent need to drive significant improvements in safety standards, JFD developed the COBRA rebreather set which provides an advanced emergency bailout provision that greatly extends the supply of emergency breathing gas, providing a supply of up to 33 minutes at a depth of 120 metres. COBRA is entirely mechanical with no complex electronic systems that could potentially compromise its safety and reliability. Compared to conventional bailout methods such as the 7 litre 300 bar twin scuba set, which at 120 metres provides seven and half minutes of breathing gas (based on a consumption rate of 40 litres per minute), the development of the advanced technology of COBRA is a significant step forward in improving subsea safety.

Earlier this year JFD delivered six COBRA sets to Rever Offshore (formerly Bibby Offshore) in order to enhance diver safety, and since delivery the company has successfully completed the first deep test dives in the North Sea. JFD has also attracted interest from overseas customers who are recognising the benefits the system offers.

It is essential when undertaking operations of any nature or in any region that divers have the confidence that the companies they are working for will ensure the provision of a reliable, advanced emergency bailout rebreather capability that will provide absolute assurance that they can conduct their operations in the safest conditions possible. It is always a defining moment to have any project recognised for the capability it brings to the market, but when that capability results in protecting lives it could not be a higher priority for JFD.

We wish all of the finalists the very best of luck, and look forward to seeing you at the award ceremony on 14th of March!