Every North Slope job requires that you complete
NSTC Unescorted training
When employers ask, "Do you have an NSTC card?", they want to know if you've taken the North Slope Training Cooperative's Unescorted 6-Pack class.
It's called "6-pack" because it's comprised of 6 separate safety training modules. The "Unescorted" comes in because with this training you are allowed to travel independently, or unescorted, throughout the field. Visitors who are not NSTC trained must be escorted at all times by a qualified individual whenever they are out in the field or at a worksite.
There is NO substitute for this training and it must be taught by a certified instructor (see link below for providers). This training is only available in the state of Alaska. It is not available online.
Every employee on the north slope is required to complete the basic NSTC Unescorted 6-pack of courses. Many workers must also take an Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) Awareness class.
The only people who do not need to complete this training are those few that work only in Deadhorse at the hotels, stores, post office, etc.
These classes must be completed before arrival on the slope. The 6-pack takes approximately 8 hours and the H2S class lasts another hour. These classes are taught all on the same day - it's a long classroom session but very interesting.
To prove that you are NSTC certified, you are issued an official NSTC card that you must be able to produce on demand. This card lists the courses that you have completed. Your NSTC card is valid as long as you complete required refresher training. A refresher is required any time there is a major change to the program (rare) and when the Alaska Safety Handbook (ASH) is updated.
Your employer, or the NSTC Office, can provide you with information about class requirements and refresher training. See www.nstc.apicc.org
If you have already completed NSTC Unescorted training and can produce your card, then you are ahead of the game when it comes to getting hired. With it, an employer can hire you and send you to the slope immediately.
If you have not completed the NSTC Unescorted 6-pack then your company will put you through training. Some companies have their own NSTC trainers while others send you to a class. Attending this training is part of your job and you are paid to take it. Training usually takes place in Anchorage though there are some offerings elsewhere in the state. This class is not taught outside of the state of Alaska.
Anyone can sign up for and take NSTC training. I paid for and took the 6-pack & H2S on my own hoping that it would give me an edge over other applicants. Most people do not do this. I was told that maybe 5% of the students are there on their own. When I went for my 1st interview I took my NSTC card with me and made sure the interviewers knew that I was NSTC certified. I got the job. My boss later told me the fact that I had gone out and completed this training on my own showed that I had initiative and that I was serious about working on the slope.
The Unescorted 6-pack costs $190 and takes 8-9 hours to complete. The H2S course costs $15 and takes another hour.
Interested in taking the NSTC 6-pack on your own?
Visit this list of certified NSTC trainers: www.nstc.apicc.org/providers.htm
The information below is from the official NSTC North Slope Training Cooperative website. http://nstc.apicc.org
The North Slope Training Cooperative Unescorted program is required of all employees and visitors who will be working and traveling unescorted on the slope. The training consists of the following six courses:
NSTC: Alaska Safety Handbook(ASH) Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope can use the Alaska Safety Handbook (ASH) as a key reference to identify correct safety policies and procedures utilized on the North Slope. Application of standards, permits and guiding principles are covered in the course.
NSTC: Camps & Safety Orientation Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope have the basic information they need about traveling, living in the camps and general safety practices and rules for working in the remote areas. The session provides an overview of the policies and procedures for HSE activities on the Slope.
NSTC: Environmental Excellence Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope recognize and use company and regulatory policies to minimize the effects of operations on the environment. The module will cover the procedures and guidelines in the North Slope Environmental Field Handbook.
NSTC: Hazard Communication (HAZCOM) Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope can recognize health and physical hazards in the workplace and take steps to control them. The session includes procedures for acquiring and using Material Safety and Physical Agent Data Sheets (MSDS and PADS).
NSTC: HAZWOPER First Responder Awareness Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope can demonstrate the proper response to releases or potential releases of hazardous substances. The course provides information on recognizing hazardous substances, including the use of the DOT Emergency Response Guide.
NSTC: Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Description: This module is part of the NSTC Unescorted course and is provided to ensure that personnel working on the North Slope have the ability to identify potential hazards and correctly use personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect against personal injury. The module includes hazard assessment, PPE selection, and care and maintenance of PPE.
NSTC: Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) Description: This course is provided to ensure that personnel working in H2S designated areas on the North Slope can recognize the hazardous characteristics of H2S and can correctly apply the standards, procedures and emergency response practices for potential exposures. The class covers the physical and health characteristics of the vapor, exposure limits, alarms, evacuation procedures and safety precautions for working in areas where H2S may be present.
All company or contract employees must also complete all other applicable regulatory training specific to their assigned job task exposures prior to commencing work. This shall be indicated on the employee’s NSTC card.