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Do I need GWO Enhanced First Aid? 3 questions to ask

First Aid training is a crucial element of GWO Basic Safety Training.  It is easy to assume that in choosing this package for yourself or your colleagues you will have the correct level of first aid knowledge for working in a Wind Turbine environment.  You may have seen ‘GWO Enhanced First Aid’ courses advertised and wondered who these courses are for. So let’s take a closer look at Enhanced First Aid training.

Let’s first consider this: If the basic GWO First Aid course were sufficient, why do we need an Enhanced First Aid course?

The answer is of course, in many cases the GWO First Aid course is not sufficient and does not provide a level of skill, knowledge and competence required for working in the wind industry.  In recent years the basic GWO First Aid course content has been reduced down and now requires 7 hours to complete, depending on the format and training provider. By contrast, the Enhanced First Aid course is 21 hours. There are many differences between the two courses, but essentially the differences boil down to how quickly the emergency services or onsite response teams can respond to the emergency, if at all.  

So 3 questions you need to consider:

1 - Will you be working offshore?

2 - Will you be working in a high-risk environment?

3 - Have you checked with your employer/operator which level of First Aid they require?

If the answer to questions 1 or 2 is YES, we strongly advise you to consider the Enhanced First Aid course over the basic First Aid course. The standard First Aid course is designed to teach basic life-saving first aid for those working in the industry where there is likely to be a quicker response from emergency services and/or onsite response teams with more advanced training. It will provide a lower level of skills, abilities, and knowledge, and uses basic first aid equipment. This is sufficient if you are office-based, occasionally visit a wind farm and are not regularly working in this environment.

The GWO Enhanced First Aid course is now becoming the standard for offshore work and work in more remote and or dangerous locations. It will give a higher level of skills, abilities, and knowledge, and use more advanced equipment and techniques. It is aimed at higher-risk environments, where response times from emergency services and/or onsite rescue teams will be delayed and first aiders are managing teams and situations by themselves only with the support of teleconsultation.

Benn Faulkner from Renewable Field Services explains from an employer’s point of view; ‘We are seeing increasing numbers of clients requiring GWO Enhanced First Aid trained technicians as the basic First Aid is not comprehensive enough. GWO basic first aid provides the essentials in case of an emergency. It should be considered only as exactly that because this GWO standard does not meet the British Standard requirements. GWO Enhanced First Aid does, however, ensure candidates are trained in the essentials and also enable them to apply first aid to a range of specific injuries and illnesses.

So when booking your GWO training, take a moment to consider the environment in which you (or the person you are booking the course for) will be working. You may need to check with the employer.

If you still have questions, do get in touch with us at Safer at Work and we will be happy to chat through the course content, and which would be most relevant for you. 


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