Every industry has unique challenges that can impact medical services. For offshore and onshore wind farms, the ability to access remote installations and care for workers is crucial.
If there is an injury on-site, it’s crucial to get medical help as soon as possible. When medical facilities are far away, having a medic on-site can make a big difference in the quality of medical care provided during the first few hours.
For years, Remote Medical International has worked with a renewable energy company to develop a screening standard for turbine workers so that they can stay safe. With the acquisition of SSI Energy, we’ve inherited even more experience in providing medics for offshore turbine installations.
Here’s what we’ve learned.
Unique Challenges of Renewable Energy
One key challenge particular to offshore wind turbine construction is a lack of space to set up a clinic. Even on a small vessel, there is usually a room for a medic to store supplies and treat patients. But offshore turbines typically don’t have any space.
Instead, medics working on offshore turbine projects must carry everything they need on their person. In many cases, these medics carry backpacks full of supplies. This enables them to access all the turbines if there’s a need for medical services.
Requirements for Medics in Renewable Energy
As mentioned in the previous paragraph, medics working on offshore wind turbine installations must be able to provide medical care from a backpack instead of a clinic. This setup is very different than a typical workspace or hospital, so medics must have the right experience to provide exceptional care.
Additionally, medics may need to meet fitness requirements. Climbing up and down turbines can be exhausting. However, medics may need to scale the turbines to reach an injured person. Therefore, offshore turbine medics must meet minimum fitness qualifications.
A Success Story
When a facility is fairly close to medical services, it may seem unnecessary to have a paramedic on-site. However, in some cases, having a medic on-site can make a huge difference.
In 2016, an SSI employee named Peter Lane noticed that a wind turbine worker was looking ill during a training. Although the worker believed that he had indigestion, the paramedic instead diagnosed an irregular heartbeat. He bundled him into a car and called an ambulance to meet them as soon as possible.
As the ambulance approached, the worker went into cardiac arrest. Using a defibrillator from the installation, Peter and the ambulance paramedic worked together to keep him alive. Because of Peter’s awareness and quick-thinking, he survived.
If a paramedic hadn’t been on-site to diagnose the worker’s condition as more serious than indigestion, the results may have been very different.
Read more about this story here.
Keeping Renewable Energy Employees Safe
While industries have different challenges, they’re all invested in keeping their employees safe and healthy. Finding a medical provider who understands the unique challenges of each industry is beneficial. Medical staff should be deployed completely prepared to succeed in each project location.
Renewable energy companies can rely on experienced companies like Remote Medical International to provide medics that can handle emergency medical situations in challenging locations.