“The training in Iceland with Arctic Trucks was excellent in preparing our expedition to Antarctica. The experience and professionalism of the AT team is exemplary and the co-ordination of training was smooth and flexible. The glaciers with fast changing weather and various snow conditions presented many challenges and we had a great experience in using the cars.”
MIKA KALAKOSKI, Development Manager, FINNARP Finnish Antarctic Research Program
Anyone visiting Antarctica is required to have knowledge on Antarctica that focuses on environmental preservation and safety. All our NGO’s (Non-Governmental Organisations) receive an information booklet and receive a short lecture on this prior to their flight from Punta Arenas or Cape Town, administered by ALI and TAC. We offer additional “hands on experience” training programs in Iceland that vary depending on the expedition or projects.
The Icelandic glaciers pose many similar challenges as Antarctica, they are accessible all year around for fraction of the cost of going to Antarctica. There is also the benefit that our product development is based there and so we have access to the expertise of the entire AT operation and team. Since 2008, Arctic Trucks has hosted number training programs for Antarctica expeditions both for a number of National Antarctic Research Programs and for number of skiing expeditions.
Driver training: Even though Arctic Trucks vehicles drive just like a normal car in most conditions, there are many extra skills required to make use of the extra capabilities they offer and to safely navigate and travel in extreme conditions. Most people with reasonable driving experience can manage some driving in Antarctica without specific training but conditions are highly likely to call for other experience for large parts of the route. For those planning to do more of the driving, driver training is an important consideration. It includes how to use tyre pressure to modify vehicle handling characteristics over different terrains, specific driving techniques in deep soft snow, driving in whiteout and navigation.
Cold weather training: Many of our clients already have cold weather experience from living in cold areas, various winter sports etc and they already know how to dress up and deal with the cold, the wind and the strong sun. For others, this may be completely new and they will benefit greatly from this type of training. Expedition clothing and sleeping bags are sometimes included in expedition pricing and a checklist is provided for others. For people that indend to undertake skiing or any sustained extra vehiclar activities it is vital they have and can prove their cold weather experience before a permit for the expedition is given by appropriate authorities.
Crevasse training: Some expeditions may travel through crevasse areas that can pose a danger to personnel and equipment. The program focuses on preventive measures, such as searching for the safest route, working procedures in risky areas, use of safety harnesses and how to react if problems occur. Our training and the equipment we carry has already proven itself when we were contacted to help another operator in Antarctica, saving a person’s life.
Maintenance and repairs: Arctic Trucks offers training programs to learn about how to maintain and repair the Arctic Trucks vehicles located in Antarctica. This is normally only required by fleet operators such as the Antarctic National Research programs.
Specific interest training: Use of navigation and communication equipment is normally a part of the drivers training program but can be offered separately. As part of other programs we are able to offer training in specific special interests e.g. photography and video.