Course Information

The North Slope Training Cooperative (NSTC) manages an HSE curriculum designed specifically for workers on the North Slope. The NSTC Curriculum includes the Unescorted Course, the Offshore Safety Awareness Course, four Job Specific courses and ten Special Awareness courses.

The curriculum is based on the Alaska Safety Handbook (ASH) and the North Slope Environmental Field Handbook (EFH). The ASH, BP ASH, and EFH meet or exceed OSHA and other regulatory standards.

NSTC courses are taught by instructors who have completed a qualification process. Operator and contractor companies have two training options. They may either have one of their HSE specialists become a qualified NSTC Instructor to conduct classes for their own employees or they may send their employees to an NSTC Third-Party Provider, an independent training company licensed to teach the NSTC courses.


Unescorted Course: 8 hours, Awareness Level

The 8-hour Unescorted Course is required for all employees prior to arrival on the North Slope. It consists of 6 modules (the 6-pack) plus H2S/FeS. Each module makes use of lecture, discussion, individual and small group exercises, and quizzes to involve employees in their own learning. Upon completion of the course, employees receive an NSTC card, which allows them to travel unescorted within and between the operating fields to which they are assigned.

Module I: Introduction, Camps and Safety Orientation is an introduction to the unique working conditions at Alaska’s North Slope oil and gas facilities and the importance of working safely.

Module II: Alaska Safety Handbooks is an overview of the Alaska Safety Handbook which provides the basic safety standards and requirements for daily tasks and projects in the operating areas on the North Slope.

Module III: Personal Protective Equipment provides an overview of typical job hazards where personal protective equipment may be required to minimize the risk of injury.

Module IV: HAZCOM reviews the components of a hazard communication program, the types of hazardous chemicals, and the resources available for identifying and controlling those hazards.

Module V: HAZWOPER, First Responder Awareness focuses on the proper response to releases or potential releases of hazardous substances with special emphasis on the DOT Emergency Response Guidebook and DOT Pipeline Awareness.

Module VI: Environmental Excellence emphasizes personal responsibility for following environmental rules and regulations relating to air, land, water, wildlife, spills, and waste management as detailed in the North Slope Environmental Handbook.

Module VII: Hydrogen Sulfide/Iron Sulfide (H2S/FeS) is an introduction to the hazardous characteristics of H2S and FeS and how to apply the standards and procedures for working safely in potentially hazardous areas.

Job Specific Courses

The User Level Job Specific Courses six to eight hours in length.

Energy Isolation

Energy Isolation is designed to ensure that workers are protected from injury due to unexpected release of energy during equipment maintenance and startup.

Module I is an introduction, for affected and authorized workers, to the Energy Isolation Standard, the types of energy sources, potential hazards, and how to control them.

Module II provides authorized workers with step-by-step procedures for isolating equipment using such techniques as lockout tagout, lockbox, blinding, misalignment, double block and bleed, and single valve isolation. It emphasizes each employee’s responsibilities during those procedures using practice exercises and simulations.

Fall Protection

Fall Protection reviews the hazards of working at height and the proper use of fall protection systems. It focuses on equipment types, acceptable anchorages, and practice in how to inspect, don, adjust, use, doff, and maintain fall protection equipment. Employees learn how to make sure their PFAS has clearance for proper deployment and what to do if they or a co-worker falls.

Respiratory Protection

Respiratory Protection is an introduction to the use of the three types of respiratory protection used on the North Slope.

Module I: Introduction to Respiratory Protection is an overview of the hazardous conditions requiring the use of respirators, control measures, and the responsibilities of the employees and employers in a respiratory program.

Module II: APR focuses on the conditions requiring the use of air-purifying respirators, the equipment types, and how to inspect, don, doff, clean, and store the equipment.

Module III: SCBA addresses the conditions requiring the use of the self-contained breathing apparatus, the equipment types, and components, how to properly inspect, don, doff, clean, and store the equipment.

Module IV: SAR identifies the conditions requiring the use of a supplied air respirator, the equipment types, and components, and how to properly inspect, don, doff, clean, and store the equipment.

Confined Space Entry

Confined Space Entry is an overview of the safety procedures for employees entering and working in confined spaces. It emphasizes the characteristics of a confined space, the permitting requirements, identifying hazards, the step-by-step procedures for entering and working in a confined space, the responsibilities of each team member, and rescue protocols.

Special Awareness Courses

Special Awareness Courses are Awareness level courses that are 1 – 2 hours in length and include:

Asbestos Awareness

Hearing Conservation

NORM (Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials)

Benzene Awareness

Hydrogen Sulfide/ Iron Sulfide*

Static Electricity Awareness

Electrical Safety Unqualified

Lead Safety Awareness

Toxic Substances Control Act

NPRA – Balancing the Use **

*Hydrogen Sulfide/Iron Sulfide is also taught as part of the Unescorted course.

**Contact the Training Director at ConocoPhillips (907-263-4681) to take this distance-learning course.

Offshore Safety Awareness

The Offshore Safety Awareness Modules provide a safety orientation for employees working on man-made islands, marine vessels, and oil/gas platforms in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas.  Offshore Safety Awareness is designed to be 3 – 4 hours in length.

Module I: Introduction, Cultural Awareness and Operations is an introduction to the lifestyle and culture of Alaska Native people on the North Slope, the areas where offshore oil and gas operations are occurring, and the unique geography and weather conditions.

Module II: Offshore Travel emphasizes the procedures for safe offshore travel by ice road, helicopter, crew boat or hovercraft.

Module III: Living and Working Safely Offshore describes the unique offshore living conditions and emphasizes how to work safely on man-made islands, marine vessels, and drilling platforms.

Module IV: Offshore Environmental Concerns emphasizes the importance of personal responsibility in following environmental rules and regulations to minimize the effects of offshore oil/gas drilling.