Brockenhurst College student Louis Day of New Milton to run water taxi – in Antarctica
A BROCKENHURST College apprentice is heading to the Antarctic to pilot one of the world’s most extreme water taxi services.
Marine engineer Louis Day (21), from New Milton, will travel to the world’s driest, windiest and coldest continent to spend its summer months transporting scientists by boat to icebergs, islands and dive sites so they can collect data.
He has secured his first big career break by landing a 15-month boating officer contract with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).
In preparation for his new roles, Louis has undertaken first aid, survival and fire training, as well as a hyperbaric chamber operator course.
“This is the thing I wanted to do throughout my apprenticeship, so I’ve achieved my early ambition,” he said.
“I feel well prepared and am very excited about the work that lies ahead.”
He must first fly from RAF Brize Norton to the Falkland Islands to complete a fortnight’s Covid quarantine, before continuing to his final destination of Rothera research station.
Louis, who completed his apprenticeship through Brockenhurst College, will be on the water for between seven and 10 hours a day driving a 7.5-metre RIB.
His former teacher Matt Rolph said: “What an opportunity this is for a young man who wants to make an early mark in his career. We wish him all the very best.”
In the winter months Louis will concentrate on repair and maintenance work to ensure effective operations during the following spring and summer.
He completed a Level 3 Marine Engineering qualification during his four-year apprenticeship with Southampton-based Solent Boat Training.
His programme was run by Brockenhurst College’s Marchwood Construction and Marine Technologies Training Centre.As part of the course, Louis completed his Royal Yachting Association Day Skipper and Coastal Skipper qualifications, which enable him to drive a vessel up to 24 metres long.
The college has more than 2,800 16-19 year old students and around 5,000 adult learners. In addition, it attracts a high proportion of international students and has its own staff delivering A-level programmes in schools China.