GWO on-site training packages

GWO on-site training

A complete range of on-site training solutions for wind technicians.

As the requirements for training for increased in line with the industry growth in the USA OEM, sowners and ISPs are increasingly looking to more cost efficient models to support the development of their workforse. Onsite GWO training courses are a great way to reduce overheads but also have some clear advantages through the addition of bolt on training modules and use of the realworld environment to enhance learning objectives and better engage students.

STL USA has a long history of training onsite not just in the USA but around the world, delivering a range of training for customers including GWO, electrical safety and working with teams on rescue plans.


What courses are available on-site?

Safety courses are the main focus of on-site training as technical courses tend to have better learning outcomes in a more controlled environment, aside from the fact that most owners are less keen for techs to loosen bolts and play around with components in a live environment! To this end the range of courses covered by STL USA onsite includes:

  • GWO Basic Safety Training: Training includes the modules; First Aid, Fire Awareness, Manual Handling and Working at Height.
  • GWO Advanced Rescue: Hub and NAcelle, Single Hub and Nacelle for a total of 4 modules
  • Qualified Electrical Worker to standard NFPA 70E (Low and High Voltage): A Siemens approved face-to-face version of the popular electrical safety training designed specifically for wind turbine technicians.

How is on-site training delivered?

Having delivered on-site training over many years the STL USA team have arrived at the optimal training set-up for on-site delivery.

STL USA on-site training uses our custom mobile training unit which allows for both GWO Basic Safety and GWO Advanced Rescue tuition, this is supplemented by theory/classroom sessions. Obviously sites don’t have classrooms so any meeting room or similar is normally sufficient.

Alongside the mobile training unit STL USA will also use a wind turbine if available. this allows us to apply a teach and practice approach to rescue exercises. Using the controlled envirnmoent to teach the necessary skills and then going up tower to practice what has been learnt.

Technicians really value this experience as it gives them the opportunity to test the skills they have learnt in the actual environment where one day they may need to be used.

The on-site advantage

GWO on-site training brings with it a range of advantages, these include:

  1. Cost Saving: On-site dramatically reduces overheads normally associated with a 4-5 day visit to a training site, travel, car hire and accommodation are all removed when visiting techs at their home location.

  2. Safety Enhancements: Training on-site brings with it a range of safety enhancements. Including the ability to create rescue plans, live practice in a turbine and more.

  3. Real World Environment: You cannot replicate real life! The ability to practice rescues in the exact environment techs work in is invaluable. This enhances the abilit of technicians to perform rescues if/when they are ever required.

  4. Onsite Packages: STL USA have designed a range of course bolt-ons to enhance the onsite training offer, meeting a range of training needs in one site visit. 

Onsite training packages

An on-site visit is the perfect opportunity to delver a range of training to teams not just the basics. Often GWO BST and ART form the core of training but these can also be refresher courses. QEW can be added and a host more.

Additions to the core GWO courses include:

  1. 1 day QEW (Qualified Electrical Worker to NFPA 70E) Low Voltage course
  2. 1 day QEW (Qualified Electrical Worker to NFPA 70E) High Voltage course
  3. 1/2 day Rescue plan development, includes written rescue plan for a range of scenarios with video/images
  4. EAP/ERP (Emergency Action/Response Plan) site evaluation and reporting (equipment, existing plans), development of updated plan and testing of plan to include video, written documentation and live trial. 
  5. 1/2 day local first responder sessions. Intro for local first responders to the wind turbine environment

How do I make an on-site training booking?

Booking a GWO onsite training is easy. Simply click below to speak with a member of the STL USA team who can walk you through the logistics, confirm dates and provide you with everything you need to know.

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The changing face of the wind technician

three wind technicians o a wind farm. The changing face of the wind technician

The Evolving Role of Wind Technicians in the Renewable Energy Landscape

As renewable energies have moved from the fringes to the mainstream of global energy production, the role of wind technicians has evolved significantly. Once considered a niche job, the position of a wind technician is now a cornerstone of the burgeoning wind energy industry. These skilled professionals are essential in ensuring the operational efficiency and safety of wind turbines, which are critical components in the shift towards sustainable energy. This article delves into the role of wind technicians, highlighting how the job has transformed over the years.

What is a Wind Technician?

A wind technician, also known as a wind turbine technician, is responsible for the installation, maintenance, and repair of wind turbines. These professionals play a vital role in the operation of wind farms, ensuring that turbines function optimally to generate electricity. The primary duties of a wind technician include:

  • Installation: Setting up new wind turbines, which involves assembling mechanical components, electrical systems, and ensuring proper alignment.
  • Maintenance: Performing regular inspections and preventive maintenance to keep turbines running smoothly. This includes checking the mechanical, electrical, and hydraulic systems.
  • Repair: Diagnosing and fixing issues that arise, such as mechanical failures or electrical malfunctions. This often requires climbing tall towers and working in confined spaces.

The Early Days of Wind Technology

When wind energy was in its infancy, the role of a wind technician was relatively straightforward but highly demanding. Early turbines were smaller and less complex, but they required frequent maintenance due to technological limitations and wear and tear. Technicians often worked in isolated, rural areas with minimal infrastructure, making the job physically challenging and sometimes hazardous.

In the early days, the primary focus was on basic mechanical skills. Technicians needed to be adept at using hand tools, understanding simple electrical circuits, and performing routine maintenance tasks. Safety protocols were less stringent, and the job required a high degree of manual labor and physical endurance.

The Transformation of Wind Technology

As renewable energy gained prominence, the wind energy sector experienced significant technological advancements. Turbines grew in size and complexity, incorporating sophisticated electronics, advanced materials, and cutting-edge control systems. These changes have had a profound impact on the role of wind technicians.

  1. Increased Complexity: Modern wind turbines are marvels of engineering, featuring advanced sensors, computerized control systems, and aerodynamic designs. Wind technicians now need a solid understanding of electronics, software, and hydraulics in addition to traditional mechanical skills.

  2. Safety Enhancements: The industry has seen a substantial improvement in safety standards. Enhanced safety gear, rigorous training programs, and strict adherence to safety protocols have made the job safer. Technicians are trained in rescue operations and first aid, and they must follow stringent guidelines to mitigate risks associated with working at heights and in confined spaces.

  3. Predictive Maintenance: The shift from reactive to predictive maintenance has transformed the day-to-day activities of wind technicians. Using data analytics and real-time monitoring systems, technicians can predict potential issues before they cause turbine failures. This proactive approach reduces downtime and increases the overall efficiency of wind farms.

  4. Remote Monitoring: Advances in technology allow for remote monitoring of turbine performance. Wind technicians can now diagnose issues and sometimes even resolve them without needing to be physically present at the turbine site. This reduces the need for on-site visits and allows technicians to manage multiple turbines more effectively.

  5. Specialization and Training: With the increasing complexity of wind turbines, specialized training programs have become essential. Technicians often undergo extensive training, including certification programs offered by organizations like the Global Wind Organization (GWO). These programs cover a wide range of skills, from basic turbine maintenance to advanced electrical and hydraulic systems.

The Modern Wind Technician

Today’s wind technician is a highly skilled professional who combines physical dexterity with technical expertise. The role requires a mix of skills, including:

  • Technical Knowledge: Proficiency in electronics, software, and mechanical systems is crucial. Technicians must be able to interpret complex technical diagrams and troubleshoot advanced systems.
  • Safety Consciousness: A strong commitment to safety is essential. Technicians must adhere to strict safety protocols and use protective equipment to prevent accidents.
  • Problem-Solving Skills: The ability to quickly diagnose and fix issues is vital. Technicians often work under pressure to restore turbines to full operation as quickly as possible.
  • Physical Fitness: The job remains physically demanding. Climbing tall structures, working in confined spaces, and enduring various weather conditions require a high level of physical fitness and endurance.
  • Adaptability: The renewable energy sector is dynamic, with continuous advancements in technology. Wind technicians must be willing to learn and adapt to new tools, techniques, and systems.

The Future of Wind Technicians

The role of wind technicians will continue to evolve as the renewable energy sector grows and innovates. Future advancements may include the use of drones for inspections, further integration of artificial intelligence for predictive maintenance, and the development of even more sophisticated turbine technology.

In conclusion, the role of wind technicians has transformed dramatically since the early days of wind energy. From basic mechanical maintenance to managing complex, high-tech systems, wind technicians are at the forefront of the renewable energy revolution. As the industry continues to evolve, these professionals will play an increasingly critical role in ensuring the reliability and efficiency of wind power, contributing significantly to the global push for sustainable energy solutions.

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Ten things you should know before starting a career as a wind technician

Starting a career as a wind technician in the USA

Starting a career as a wind technician can be both rewarding and challenging. Here are ten things you might wish you’d known before embarking on this path:

1. Physical Demands

The job is physically demanding, involving climbing tall wind turbines (often over 300 feet) and working in confined spaces. It’s essential to be in good physical condition and comfortable with heights.

2. Safety is Paramount

Safety protocols are rigorous and must be followed meticulously. You’ll need to undergo extensive safety training, including rescue techniques and first aid. Understanding and respecting these protocols can save lives.

3. Weather Dependency

Your work is highly dependent on weather conditions. Wind technicians often work in challenging environments, including extreme cold, heat, and high winds. Flexibility and preparedness for varying weather are crucial.

4. Continuous Learning

The technology in wind turbines is constantly evolving. You’ll need to commit to ongoing education and training to stay current with new systems, tools, and techniques.

5. Travel Requirements

Many wind technicians spend a significant amount of time traveling to remote wind farm locations. This can mean being away from home for extended periods, which can impact your personal life and require strong support systems.

6. Career Opportunities

There are diverse career paths within the industry, including supervisory roles, specialized technical positions, and opportunities in project management and training. Knowing these options can help you plan your career progression.

7. Teamwork and Communication

Strong teamwork and communication skills are vital. You’ll often work in pairs or small teams, requiring clear communication and collaboration to ensure safety and efficiency.

8. Problem-Solving Skills

You’ll frequently encounter unexpected issues that require quick thinking and effective problem-solving skills. Being resourceful and able to troubleshoot on the spot is an invaluable asset.

9. Regulatory Knowledge

Understanding the regulatory environment is important. Familiarize yourself with local, state, and federal regulations regarding wind energy and workplace safety to ensure compliance and best practices.

10. Job Satisfaction and Impact

Despite the challenges, many find great satisfaction in knowing their work contributes to renewable energy and environmental sustainability. The sense of purpose and impact on the planet can be a significant motivating factor.

Additional Tips:

  • Networking: Building a network within the industry can provide support, job opportunities, and professional growth.
  • Certification: Obtaining relevant certifications (such as from the Global Wind Organization) can enhance your credentials and job prospects.
  • Tool Familiarity: Becoming proficient with the specialized tools and software used in the industry can improve your efficiency and effectiveness on the job.

By understanding these aspects before starting your career as a wind technician, you can better prepare for the demands of the job and maximize your success and satisfaction in this growing field.

Training with STL USA brings huge amounts of added benefit beyond simply gaining your GWO certifications. Our mission is to train the whole wind technician, giving them the skills and competencies that are so often lacking from basic training. This means, not only are they more qualified to actually do the job at an entry level position, we also help build these skills throughout their career, meaning quicker advancement, higher paying jobs, and greater levels of career diversification further along the line. All our trainers have years of high quality real-world experience which means they bring a wide range of knowledge and adaptive skills to all our courses.

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The wind industry – where are we now and what does the future look like?

The US wind industry is growing rapidly, so what do we need to consider to ensure a robust future?

The wind industry in the United States has experienced significant growth and development over the past few decades. Here is a summary of its current state:

Growth and Capacity

  • Installed Capacity: As of 2023, the U.S. has over 140 GW of installed wind power capacity. This capacity is expected to continue growing as more projects come online.
  • Annual Additions: In recent years, the U.S. has been adding around 10-12 GW of wind capacity annually. This trend is driven by both onshore and offshore wind projects.

Economic Impact

  • Job Creation: The wind industry supports over 120,000 jobs across various sectors, including manufacturing, installation, maintenance, and support services.
  • Investment: Wind energy projects attract significant investments, with billions of dollars invested annually. This includes both domestic and international investors.

Technological Advancements

  • Turbine Efficiency: Technological advancements have led to more efficient and larger turbines. The average capacity of newly installed wind turbines has increased, leading to greater energy output per turbine.
  • Grid Integration: Improvements in grid integration technologies and energy storage solutions are helping to address the intermittent nature of wind power, making it a more reliable energy source.

Policy and Regulation

  • Incentives: Federal and state incentives, such as the Production Tax Credit (PTC) and Investment Tax Credit (ITC), have been crucial in supporting the growth of the wind industry. These incentives help reduce the cost of wind projects and make them more competitive with other energy sources.
  • State Policies: Many states have set renewable portfolio standards (RPS) that require a certain percentage of energy to come from renewable sources, including wind. These state-level policies drive local demand for wind energy.

Environmental Impact

  • Emissions Reduction: Wind power plays a significant role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It displaces fossil fuel-based power generation, contributing to cleaner air and lower carbon footprints.
  • Land Use and Wildlife: There are ongoing efforts to minimize the impact of wind farms on wildlife and local ecosystems. This includes careful site selection and technology to reduce bird and bat fatalities.


  • Intermittency: The intermittent nature of wind energy remains a challenge. However, advances in energy storage and grid management are mitigating these issues.
  • Supply Chain: The wind industry faces supply chain challenges, including the sourcing of materials and components. The growth of the industry depends on a robust and resilient supply chain.
  • Community Acceptance: Gaining community acceptance for wind projects, especially in populated or scenic areas, can be challenging. Engagement and communication with local communities are essential for project success.

Overall, the wind industry in the U.S. is in a strong position with continued growth and development expected in the coming years. Investments in technology, supportive policies, and increased capacity are driving the industry towards a significant role in the nation’s energy mix.

The lack of wind technicians in the USA poses several significant issues for the wind energy industry. Here are the primary challenges and impacts associated with this shortage:

Key Issues

  1. Maintenance and Reliability
    • Increased Downtime: Without sufficient technicians, routine maintenance and repairs can be delayed, leading to increased downtime for wind turbines. This reduces the overall efficiency and reliability of wind farms.
    • Risk of Damage: Delays in addressing minor issues can lead to more significant damage over time, increasing repair costs and potential safety hazards.
  2. Economic Impact
    • Higher Costs: The shortage of technicians can drive up labor costs as companies compete for a limited pool of qualified workers. This can increase the overall cost of wind energy production.
    • Delayed Projects: The lack of available technicians can delay the commissioning of new wind projects, impacting timelines and potentially leading to financial losses for developers.
  3. Safety Concerns
    • Overworked Technicians: Existing technicians may be overworked due to high demand, leading to fatigue and increased risk of accidents. Ensuring the safety of workers is a critical concern in the industry.
    • Quality of Training: In an effort to fill positions quickly, there might be a temptation to reduce training duration or quality, which can compromise safety and effectiveness.
  4. Growth and Expansion
    • Stalled Development: The expansion of wind farms may be hindered by the lack of technicians, as developers might be hesitant to invest in new projects without a reliable workforce to maintain them.
    • Impact on Targets: National and state renewable energy targets could be jeopardized if the growth of wind energy is slowed due to labor shortages.
  5. Regional Disparities
    • Rural Challenges: Many wind farms are located in rural areas where it is more difficult to attract and retain skilled workers. This exacerbates the technician shortage in these regions.
    • Training Accessibility: Access to quality training programs might be limited in certain areas, making it harder for local communities to supply the needed workforce.

Addressing the Shortage

  1. Education and Training Programs
    • Expand Programs: Increasing the number of wind technician training programs at technical schools and community colleges can help meet demand.
    • Partnerships: Collaboration between the wind industry and educational institutions can ensure that training programs align with industry needs and standards.
  2. Attracting Talent
    • Awareness Campaigns: Promoting the benefits and opportunities of a career as a wind technician can attract new talent to the field.
    • Incentives: Offering competitive salaries, benefits, and career advancement opportunities can make the profession more attractive.
  3. Retention Strategies
    • Work-Life Balance: Implementing policies that support work-life balance can help retain existing technicians and reduce turnover.
    • Continuing Education: Providing ongoing training and professional development opportunities can enhance job satisfaction and retention.
  4. Utilizing Technology
    • Remote Monitoring: Advances in remote monitoring and predictive maintenance technologies can reduce the physical demand on technicians and optimize their use.
    • Automation: Incorporating automated systems for routine inspections and minor repairs can alleviate some of the burdens on human technicians.
  5. Policy Support
    • Government Initiatives: Federal and state governments can support workforce development initiatives, including funding for training programs and incentives for hiring and retaining technicians.
    • Regulatory Support: Streamlining certification and licensing processes for wind technicians can make it easier to enter and progress in the field.

By addressing these issues through targeted strategies and investments, the wind industry can mitigate the technician shortage and continue its growth trajectory, contributing to a more sustainable energy future.

We asked one of our value clients for their thoughts.

“I’m quite confident in the short term of the wind industry (20 – 30 years) however long term is to be determined.  I believe wind will always have a place in the energy sector however new technologies are always being explored and maybe the next generation will call for something different, as we did from the coal generation.  My father spent his career building coal fired power plants and they were the energy heroes of the day, especially during the energy crises.  People are always looking for new and improved ways to be more ecofriendly and energy efficient and want to be part of change.  I’m excited where we go from here as maybe we are the steppingstone to the next big thing.”

The STL USA view

We’re excited for the future of wind in the USA. However, we as an industry, especially in the short term, need to do much more to attract the committed skilled workers the sector will need to flourish over the coming years. The industry hasn’t historically done a great job of promoting the careers on offer, it’s led to a supply/demand imbalance in terms of workforce and is perhaps one reason why salaries on offer are so high. Despite this however it’s a great industry to get into, with stable jobs, advancement opportunity, and a bright future. STL USA are committed to playing are part to attract the next generation of wind technicians with programs like WindStart and we’re excited to see what the future brings.

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How to become a wind technician?

how to become a wind technician

A Pathway to a Promising Career

The renewable energy sector is booming, and wind energy is at the forefront of this green revolution. Wind technicians, also known as wind turbine technicians or wind techs, play a crucial role in maintaining and servicing the wind turbines that convert wind energy into electricity. With the wind energy industry experiencing significant growth, particularly in the United States, becoming a wind technician offers a stable and rewarding career path. Programs like STL USA’s WindStart Get Into Wind exist to help those looking to get into this exciting sector in the most efficient way possible.

Industry Growth Potential in the USA

The U.S. wind energy industry has seen remarkable growth over the past decade, driven by increasing demand for clean energy, technological advancements, and supportive government policies. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, wind power capacity in the U.S. reached 139 gigawatts by the end of 2021, providing enough electricity to power over 38 million homes annually. Furthermore, the industry supports over 120,000 jobs, with wind technicians being among the fastest-growing occupations.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that employment of wind turbine technicians will grow by 61% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. This surge is largely due to the increasing number of wind farms being constructed and the need for regular maintenance of existing turbines to ensure they operate efficiently.

The Role of a Wind Technician

Wind technicians are responsible for installing, inspecting, maintaining, and repairing wind turbines. Their duties include troubleshooting electrical, mechanical, and hydraulic components, performing routine inspections, and ensuring that all systems comply with safety standards. Given the technical nature of the job, wind technicians must be proficient in a variety of skills and comfortable working at heights.

Steps to Become a Wind Technician

Educational Requirements: The first step towards becoming a wind technician is to obtain a high school diploma or GED. High school courses in mathematics, physics, and computer science can provide a solid foundation.

Enroll in a Wind Energy Training Program: Specialized training is crucial for aspiring wind technicians. Many community colleges and technical schools offer certificate and associate degree programs in wind energy technology. These programs typically cover subjects such as electrical systems, hydraulic systems, safety protocols, and climbing techniques. They also provide hands-on training with wind turbine components and simulators.

Some renowned training providers include:
– Texas State Technical College
– Lake Region State College
– Iowa Lakes Community College
– Northeast Community College

On-the-Job Training:

After completing a formal training program, aspiring wind technicians usually undergo on-the-job training. This involves working under the supervision of experienced technicians to gain practical experience. This period of training can last several months and is essential for mastering the specific requirements of different turbine models and manufacturers.


While certification is not mandatory, it can enhance job prospects and demonstrate a commitment to the profession. The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) offers certification for wind technicians, which is recognized by many employers in the industry. Alongside Nationally recognized certification the industry body, The Global Wind Organisation (GWO), produces a series of safety standards which form the basis of GWO training a key requirement for field based personel.

Continuing Education:

The wind energy industry is constantly evolving, with new technologies and regulations emerging regularly. Therefore, continuous learning and staying updated with the latest advancements in the field are crucial. Many employers provide ongoing training opportunities, and technicians can also attend industry conferences and workshops.

Importance of Training Providers

Quality training providers are vital for producing competent and skilled wind technicians. These institutions not only equip students with the necessary technical knowledge but also emphasize safety, which is paramount in this field. Wind technicians work in potentially hazardous environments, often at great heights and in varying weather conditions. Proper training ensures they are well-prepared to handle these challenges safely and efficiently.
Training providers also play a key role in bridging the gap between education and industry needs. They often collaborate with wind energy companies to ensure their curricula are aligned with industry standards and technological advancements. This collaboration helps produce graduates who are ready to meet the demands of the workforce and contribute effectively from day one.

Job Outlook and Opportunities

The job outlook for wind technicians is exceptionally positive. The expansion of wind farms across the U.S., particularly in states like Texas, Iowa, and Oklahoma, is creating a steady demand for skilled technicians. Additionally, the Biden administration’s commitment to renewable energy and the goal to achieve 100% clean electricity by 2035 are likely to further boost job opportunities in the wind energy sector.
Wind technicians can advance their careers by gaining experience and additional certifications, potentially moving into supervisory or managerial roles, or specializing in areas such as blade repair or control systems.


Becoming a wind technician offers a pathway to a dynamic and growing career in the renewable energy sector. With the U.S. wind energy industry poised for continued expansion, there is a strong demand for well-trained and skilled technicians. By following the outlined steps—obtaining the necessary education, enrolling in a reputable training program, gaining practical experience, and pursuing certification—aspiring wind technicians can embark on a fulfilling career that contributes to a sustainable future.

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What is Onsite GWO Training?

What is onsite GWO training? Technicians onsite at a wind farm

The advantages of training at your location

In the wind energy sector, ensuring the safety and proficiency of wind technicians is essential. This is where onsite GWO training by Safety Technology USA (STL USA) plays a crucial role. Let’s delve into what onsite GWO training entails and how it benefits wind energy operations.

Understanding GWO Accreditation

The Global Wind Organisation (GWO) sets international training standards aimed at minimizing risks in wind turbine environments. STL USA offers GWO Basic Safety Training (BST) and GWO Advanced Rescue Training (ART) onsite, both vital for anyone involved in wind farm operations. These courses cover essential safety practices, emergency procedures, and rescue techniques, ensuring technicians are well-prepared for any situation.

GWO courses onsite can be combined with Qualified Electrical Worker to standard NFPA 70E to maximise the value of an onsite visit.

The Advantages of Onsite Training

STL USA provides onsite training across the United States, bringing their mobile training units directly to wind farms or other operational sites. This onsite approach enhances the relevance and applicability of the skills learned, allowing technicians to train in real-world settings.

These mobile units are fully equipped to deliver GWO-compliant training, enabling companies to maintain high safety standards without the logistical challenges of sending employees to offsite training centers. This method saves time, reduces costs, and minimizes operational disruptions.

GWO Basic Safety Training (BST)

The GWO Basic Safety Training course equips wind technicians with essential safety skills, including:

  1. First Aid: Techniques tailored for wind turbine environments.
  2. Manual Handling: Safe lifting and handling practices.
  3. Fire Awareness: Fire prevention, response tactics, and evacuation procedures.
  4. Working at Heights: Safety measures for working at heights, including the use of safety harnesses and fall arrest systems.
GWO Advanced Rescue Training (ART)

For experienced technicians, the GWO Advanced Rescue Training offers advanced rescue skills, including:

  1. Hub, Spinner, and Inside Blade Rescue: Rescuing personnel from confined spaces within turbines.
  2. Nacelle, Tower, and Basement Rescue: Strategies for complex rescues from various turbine sections.
  3. Single Rescuer Hub, Spinner, and Inside Blade Rescue: Single rescuer from confined spaces within turbines.
  4. Single Rescuer Nacelle, Tower, and Basement Rescue: Single rescuer strategies for complex rescues from various turbine sections.
Why Choose STL USA for Onsite GWO Training?

Safety Technology USA is a leader in providing high-quality training due to several key factors:

  1. Expert Trainers: Experienced trainers with extensive field knowledge.
  2. Convenience: Onsite training with mobile units for maximum efficiency.
  3. Proven Track Record: Over 5,000 technicians trained, including major clients like RWE, Siemens Gamesa, and GE.
  4. Comprehensive Offerings: Additional training programs such as NFPA 70E Electrical Safety training.
Testimonials and Industry Recognition

Clients like Siemens Gamesa praise STL USA for their knowledgeable trainers and high-quality training sessions, highlighting the value and impact of STL USA’s training programs.


Understanding what onsite GWO training is and its importance can greatly enhance safety and efficiency in wind energy operations. STL USA’s onsite GWO training courses provide comprehensive, flexible, and high-quality training solutions that meet industry standards. Choosing STL USA ensures technicians are well-prepared to handle the demands of their roles, contributing to a safer and more efficient working environment.

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What is GWO training?

new gwo courses

A Guide to Wind Technician Training

As the world increasingly turns to renewable energy sources, wind power has emerged as a vital component of the global energy mix. Ensuring the safety and efficiency of wind energy operations is paramount, and this is where GWO training plays a crucial role. But what is GWO training? This article delves into the specifics of GWO training, its importance, and its impact on the wind energy industry, with insights from the Global Wind Organisation (GWO) and American Clean Power, among other sources.


Understanding GWO Training

GWO training refers to the standardized training programs developed by the Global Wind Organisation, an international body established by leading wind turbine manufacturers and operators. The primary goal of GWO training is to create a safer work environment in the wind energy sector by equipping technicians with the necessary skills and knowledge to handle the unique challenges of working on wind turbines.


Core Components of GWO Training

GWO training encompasses several key modules designed to address the fundamental safety and operational requirements of wind turbine technicians. 

The main components include:

Basic Safety Training (BST):
– First Aid: Provides essential first aid skills tailored to wind turbine environments.
– Manual Handling: Teaches safe lifting and handling techniques to prevent musculoskeletal injuries.
– Fire Awareness: Covers fire prevention, firefighting, and safe evacuation procedures.
– Working at Heights: Focuses on the safe practices for working at heights, including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and fall arrest systems.
– Sea Survival (optional): Necessary for offshore wind technicians, covering survival techniques and safety measures at sea.

Basic Technical Training (BTT):
– Mechanical: Offers fundamental mechanical skills and knowledge required for wind turbine maintenance.
– Electrical: Provides basic electrical training relevant to wind turbines.
– Hydraulic: Covers the principles of hydraulic systems used in wind turbines.

Advanced Rescue Training (ART):
– Hub, Spinner, and Inside Blade Rescue: Training for rescuing personnel from confined and complex spaces within turbines.
– Nacelle, Tower, and Basement Rescue: Techniques for safe rescues from different parts of a turbine structure.
– Single Rescuer and Team Rescuer: Training in both individual and team-based rescue scenarios.

Importance of GWO Training

GWO training is crucial for several reasons:
Safety: Wind turbines are complex and often located in challenging environments. Proper training reduces the risk of accidents and injuries, ensuring a safer work environment.
Standardization: GWO training provides a standardized set of skills and knowledge, ensuring consistency and reliability across the industry.
Efficiency: Well-trained technicians are more efficient and effective in their roles, leading to improved operational performance and reduced downtime.

The Role of American Clean Power

American Clean Power (ACP), a leading advocate for clean energy in the United States, emphasizes the importance of workforce development and training in the renewable energy sector. ACP collaborates with various organizations to promote standardized training programs like those offered by GWO, ensuring that the workforce is equipped to meet the growing demands of the wind energy industry.
According to ACP, the demand for skilled wind technicians is on the rise as the U.S. continues to expand its wind energy capacity. By supporting GWO training, ACP helps ensure that the workforce is prepared to maintain and operate wind farms safely and efficiently.

Benefits of GWO Training for Wind Technicians

Career Advancement: GWO certification is widely recognized in the wind energy industry, enhancing career prospects for technicians.
Skill Development: Comprehensive training modules ensure that technicians possess a broad range of skills, from basic safety to advanced rescue techniques.
Employer Confidence: Employers can be confident that GWO-certified technicians meet high safety and performance standards, reducing risks and improving overall efficiency.

Implementing GWO Training

Many training providers, such as Safety Technology USA (STL USA), offer GWO-accredited courses. These providers often utilize mobile training units, allowing for onsite training at wind farms, which minimizes operational disruptions and provides a real-world training environment.

Testimonials and Industry Recognition

Leading wind energy companies, including Siemens Gamesa and General Electric (GE), recognize the value of GWO training. Testimonials from these companies highlight the effectiveness of the training in enhancing safety and operational performance. Technicians trained under GWO standards are better prepared to handle the complex and demanding nature of wind energy operations.


So, what is GWO training? It’s a comprehensive, standardized training program designed to enhance the safety and efficiency of wind technicians. Developed by the Global Wind Organisation, GWO training covers essential safety practices, technical skills, and advanced rescue techniques, ensuring that technicians are well-equipped to handle the challenges of working on wind turbines. Supported by industry bodies like American Clean Power, GWO training plays a critical role in the continued growth and success of the wind energy sector.
For more information and to explore training options, visit the Global Wind Organisation and American Clean Power websites, and consider enrolling in a GWO-accredited course to advance your career in wind energy.

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The future of wind – why GWO certification is just the start.

GWO certification for safety

GWO training providers are increasing in number rapidly. But GWO certification is just the start?

GWO (Global Wind Organisation) certification refers to a set of standardized training programs and certificates designed for professionals working in the wind energy industry. The certification is provided by the Global Wind Organisation, an industry-led body established by wind turbine manufacturers and owners to ensure a safe work environment and set a global standard for safety and technical training. Numerous training and education companies provide GWO Training Courses that meet the training standards, STL USA is one such provider.

Key Components of GWO Certification:
  1. Basic Safety Training (BST):
    • First Aid: Training in emergency response and first aid specific to the wind industry.
    • Manual Handling: Techniques for safe manual handling of loads to prevent injuries.
    • Fire Awareness: Training to handle fire-related incidents and use firefighting equipment.
    • Working at Heights: Safety measures and practices for working at heights, including use of fall protection equipment.
    • Sea Survival: (Optional) Training for offshore wind turbine technicians, covering survival at sea and transfer techniques.
  2. Basic Technical Training (BTT):
    • Covers bolt tightening, mechanical, electrical, and hydraulic systems in wind turbines.
    • Aimed at technicians who are new to the wind industry and need to understand the technical aspects of wind turbines.
  3. Advanced Rescue Training (ART):
    • More specialized safety training for those who need advanced knowledge and skills.
    • Includes modules like hub and nacelle rescue and signgle rescuer options

Purpose and Benefits:

  • Safety: Ensures that all personnel working in the wind industry are trained to a high safety standard, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries.
  • Standardization: Provides a consistent training standard recognized globally, facilitating easier mobility of workers across different projects and regions.
  • Compliance: Helps companies comply with regulatory and safety requirements in various countries.
  • Efficiency: Improves the efficiency and effectiveness of wind energy projects by ensuring that workers are well-prepared for the technical and safety challenges they might face.

GWO certification is highly regarded in the wind energy sector and is often a prerequisite for employment in various roles within the industry.

While GWO accreditation is highly valuable and essential for working safely in the wind energy industry, it is not sufficient on its own for a few reasons. Additional training, certifications, and skills are often required to fully prepare individuals for the complexities of working on wind turbines. Here’s why:

1. Technical Expertise:
  • Specialized Skills: Working on wind turbines requires specific technical knowledge and skills that go beyond basic safety and technical training. This includes understanding the mechanical, electrical, and hydraulic systems unique to different turbine models.
  • Manufacturer-Specific Training: Many turbine manufacturers provide specialized training for their specific models, which is necessary to understand the nuances and proprietary technology of their equipment.
2. Experience and Practical Training:
  • Hands-On Experience: GWO training includes practical components, but actual field experience is crucial for developing the proficiency needed to handle real-world scenarios and unexpected issues that may arise during maintenance and repair work.
  • On-the-Job Training: Working under the supervision of experienced technicians and engineers helps new workers apply their training in real-world settings, which is critical for building competence and confidence.
3. Advanced and Specialized Certifications:
  • Further Certifications: There are additional certifications and training programs beyond GWO that may be required, such as high voltage safety, rope access techniques (IRATA/SPRAT), and advanced rescue operations.
  • Professional Licenses: In some regions, specific professional licenses or certifications may be required to perform certain tasks or to comply with local regulations.
4. Regulatory and Company-Specific Requirements:
  • Compliance with Local Regulations: Different countries and regions may have their own safety and technical training requirements that go beyond GWO standards. Workers need to be aware of and comply with these local regulations.
  • Company-Specific Training: Individual companies may have their own training programs and safety protocols that workers need to follow, which can include company-specific emergency procedures, operational guidelines, and additional safety measures.
5. Continuing Education and Skill Development:
  • Ongoing Learning: The wind energy industry is constantly evolving, with new technologies and best practices emerging regularly. Continuous professional development and staying updated with the latest advancements are crucial.
  • Advanced Technical Skills: As technology evolves, workers may need to acquire advanced technical skills, such as familiarity with SCADA systems, data analysis, and remote monitoring technologies.
6. Soft Skills and Team Coordination:
  • Communication Skills: Effective communication is essential for coordinating with team members, especially in complex and potentially hazardous environments.
  • Problem-Solving and Decision-Making: Working on wind turbines often requires quick thinking and problem-solving abilities to address unexpected challenges safely and efficiently.
7. Health and Fitness:
  • Physical Demands: The job can be physically demanding, requiring a good level of fitness and the ability to work at heights and in various weather conditions. Regular health and fitness assessments may be necessary to ensure workers can meet these demands safely.

In conclusion, while GWO accreditation provides a critical foundation in safety and basic technical skills, it must be complemented by additional training, experience, certifications, and compliance with local regulations and company-specific requirements to fully prepare individuals for the comprehensive demands of working on wind turbines.

Here’s STL USA’s Training Manager, Brandon McKelvain’s view on the current landscape around GWO accreditations –

“The strength of the GWO accreditations is in basic safety and rescue training. The standards are laid out in a simple consistent method. The Taxonomy Framework is excellent for developing content and courses. The “generic approach” found in GWO standards is very effective for introducing participants to a verity of PPE and rescue kits.

However, the depth of basic technical is insufficient and the certification being enduring presents a problem for improvements. More advanced technical knowledge, skills, and abilities are essential for wind technicians before entering the field and unfortunately this isn’t happening.

In addition to GWO accreditations, I think the ACP’s Micro Credentials are an excellent step in the right direction. We’ve made it a point to start integrating these into our training courses. In doing so, technicians know how to apply their skills, which is essential for technicians.”

Interested in learning more about our courses?

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WindStart for employers – Hiring new wind technicians

Hiring new wind technicians


Hiring new wind technicians is one of the biggest challenges we face in the USA both now and into the future. There is huge growth potential in the wind industry but to achieve it we need to dramatically expand the workforce.

Unfortunately hiring new wind technicians is also time consuming and expensive. Firstly there is the recruitment process then the new employee needs to be trained not only to do the job but also they need to gain industry certification – GWO being the main accreditation. Added together and the cost of a new hire at the start of their career is significant, $10’s of thousands of dollars.

So how do we solve this, how do we create a flow of new people who will stay the course with wind, train them and do it all for a budget that makes sense?

WindStart for Employers

STL USA has created the WindStart program to address these challenges head-on.

WindStart for employers is both a hiring and training solution combined. The program is designed to filter out the best students, train them and give them the core certification required by the wind industry. As a solution is saves employers time and money.

WindStart allows employers to streamline their new hire process, reducing fees, admin and risk. 

The WindStart Training Program

The perfect entry point to the wind industry

STL USA specializes in teaching new and experienced wind technicians across a variety of disciplines and accreditations. This includes a complete range of GWO accreditations (the industry standard), Qualified Electrical Worker to NFPA 70E and a full spectrum of introductory and intermediate technical courses across all aspects of the common platforms (GE, Siemens, Vestas etc)

STL USA has built a reputation for training excellence and quality. That’s why companies like GE and Siemens trust STL USA to deliver on training.


How does it work

From an employers perspective it’s super simple.

The employer sign-up process simply needs to define how many new hires are required and over what time period alongside any educational requirements and soft skills. 

STL USA then do the rest, including:

  • Managing a 3-step process which includes a written application, face to face interview and screening
  • Students who pass this are then enrolled onto the training program
  • Once students graduate STL USA then places students into the roles the employer has committed to the program


WindStart is designed to be cost efficient for employers, cutting down on hiring expenses, admin, training costs and more.

The base fee for employers is $9,000 per role. This includes the entire search, selection application process and 4 weeks training. Training includes over $10,000 of industry accreditation – GWO Basic Safety, GWO Basic Technical, GWO Advanced Rescue, QEW – NFPA 70E and a week long technical intro to wind.


The benefits of WindStart are clear. For more information click the link below.


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Specialized GWO and skills training courses from STL USA

Crane and Hoist, Slinger Signaller courses available


This year, STL USA have added a number of new, more specialized courses to our roster to help boost skills and comptency training for Wind Technicians outside of the standard GWO accreditation requirements. Below is a quick overview of each course, either click the button at the bottom of the page to learn more or drop us an email at for more information.

GWO Lift & 3S CAS?

The GWO lift course ensures participants learn to take responsibility to support and care for themselves and others while operating and working on a lift in the wind industry.

Add a 3S Climb Auto System cert to the GWO training or take this as a stand alone course.

The WindStart Program

The perfect entry point to the wind industry

STL USA specializes in teaching new and experienced wind technicians across a variety of disciplines and accreditations. This includes a complete range of GWO accreditations (the industry standard), NFPA 70E electrical safety training and a full spectrum of introductory and intermediate technical courses across all aspects of the common platforms (GE, Siemens, Vestas etc)

Why Windstart and the wind industry?

The wind sector is growing quickly across the USA as the nation looks to diversify its energy sources. Initiatives like the Inflation Reduction Act are providing significant funding for wind projects and all this against a backdrop of an industry crying out for new workers. WindStart puts employees in pole position to be hired onto high paying jobs.

  • Wind salaries are way above national averages
  • Renewable energy will need 500,000 plus new workers by 2030
  • Projects continue to launch at pace, the industry is desperate for new talent
  • WindStart provides all the standard accreditations wind tech’s need to get straight to work

Confined Space Awareness

Designed for those individuals who are responsible for managing and overseeing employees working in confined space activities.

Gearbox & Borescope

STL USA’s Gearbox & Borescope Overview course is a 3-day training course designed to introduce the wind turbine gearbox and the use of a Borescope. The course covers gearbox fundamentals, the use and management of the borescope as a diagnosis tool, and troubleshooting basics across a range of scenarios. 

Course attendees will get hands-on with a turbine gearbox and borescope through the course alongside theory modules. This course is run in partnership with Evident Scientific the leader in borescope technology.

GWO Slinger Signaller

GWO’s slinger signaller training course teaches participants how to conduct slinging techniques and signaling during simple lifting operations specific to the wind industry, meaning lifts conducted based on a lifting plan or covering known hazards.

Single module course

1.5 days duration

GWO Crane & Hoist

GWO’s Crane & Hoist training course teaches participants the ability to take responsibility as a basic user to safely operate, inspect and maintain common types of fixed cranes and hoists in WTG environment on basic lifts while following manufactures’ manuals and relevant documentation and legislation. The course is split into two modules, each 1.5 days in duration

Crane & Hoist user

1.5 days duration 

Crane & Hoist inspection and maintenance

1.5 days duration

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