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Pier head and survival craft

The pier head is used for maritime safety training for seafarers and safety training for those working on offshore installations.

About the pier head

The pier head facility is situated on the Hamble River and houses two totally enclosed motor propelled survival crafts (TEMPSC) on outrigger davits fitted on a purpose built steel structure. These craft are mainly used for OPITO-approved training for the offshore oil and gas industry. A Selantic escape system (the vertical net escape chute) is fitted to the steel structure for training offshore course delegates on its practical use.

A partially enclosed lifeboat (PELB) is also located at the pier on a gravity type davit, in addition to a slewing single arm davit used for davit launched life raft (DLR) operations and the launching and recovery of rigid inflatable boats (RIBs). Our training vessels also include two open lifeboats that are kept on moorings and used for delivering practical aspects of the proficiency in survival craft and rescue boats and other courses. A fast rescue boat can be launched from the slipway located on the bank of the river, and kept alongside pontoons during proficiency in fast rescue boat courses.

Attached to the pier is a walkway to a floating pontoon used for exercises involving throw-over type life rafts.

The pier head is located at our safety training centre in Warsash. 


  • Two totally enclosed motor propelled survival craft (TEMPSC) on outrigger davits.
  • Selantic escape system.
  • Partially enclosed lifeboat (PELB).
  • A 6.8m MCA-coded RIB made by RIBCraft with a 175hp outboard engine and fitted with four shock mitigation seats, plus nine-inch HD chart plotter and VHF radio.
  • Two open lifeboats.
  • Fast rescue boat.

Courses that use this facility

  • BSc (Hons) Nautical Science
  • FdSc Nautical Science
  • FdEng Marine Engineering
  • BEng (Hons) Marine Engineering
  • HND Marine Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • BEng (Hons) Marine Electrical and Electronic Engineering