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The Northern Lights College will soon have a training facility unique to B.C.

On Thursday evening, The College’s Jim Kassen Industry Training Centre/Centre of Excellence for Oil and Gas held a public information session, regarding a donation of a fully functional oil rig that will be used to create an educational simulated well site.

The triple cantilever rig, generously donated by Nabors Canada and Shell Canada, will serve as a hands-on training site, where students will use actual field equipment, simulating a very accurate oil rig experience.

The new rig will be part of the College’s simulated well site, where students will gain all the necessary training to work an oil rig efficiently, and most importantly safely, an aspect that the College feels is extremely important.

The new rig will allow students access to a full size fully functioning rig, standing 120 feet in height, while drilling into a 200 metre, fully encased hull.

The college has also taken into account its surroundings, considering the emission of noise and light, and how it would affect the College’s neighbouring houses. The industry standard lights that will be installed will be facing the college as to not shine on surrounding homes. With regards to noise, the College will strategically place the well 300 feet away from the closest home, reducing the noise made substantially.

The site will also be operational only during school hours, so neighbouring homes will not be disturbed during the evenings.

Dwayne Hart, Vice President of Finance and Administration for the College, says the $6 million project has been ten years in the making and is extremely important to the future of the oil and gas industry in the Northeast. He says there will be a large number of jobs opening up in the near future, and he feels this site will help provide proper training that stresses safety, to make the industry equally successful in the future.

According to Hart, 63 per cent of natural resources in B.C. come from the Northeast.

The simulated well site will be the only one of its kind in the province, with Alberta holding the only other site similar to this one.

Hart says that the College can expect the rig to be delivered sometime in the early fall.

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