The essential term which binds everyone in DOS is the notion of team, as in team spirit, teamwork. This is part of the company culture.

It means not just that they are part of the same company, whether they are marine crew, management, officers, surveyors, engineers, geophysicists, ROV pilots or other specialists, but that they assist each other in making sure that the projects are completed in a professional and safe manner and the results are those required.

This means that all of the survey team are competent not only in their own specialized field but can also undertake tasks in the maintenance and operation of all the various systems on board such as navigation, ROV, sonar, post-process, video etc.

There is no such thing as marine crew and survey crew, just DOS crew.

The result is a team which is probably unique in the world in the exploration of the deep ocean. Their day job typically is to work in 3000-5800m water depths in locations far from land.

Given the unusual nature of DOS’s activities and the high level of ship availability and technical results expected, the team also need to have a good sense of humour!


Jean Pierre Scotto - ROV pilot

What did you do before joining DOS?

As a veteran in the DOS team, I’ve had quite a long career in the subsea industry, operating all over the world.

I started in the 70s as maintenance team leader on Navy submarines including the bathyscaphe Archimede, which dived to 10,000m depth.

Next I joined the company Intersub which was a world leader in oil & gas subsea market activities using manned submarines.

In the 90s, I became an ROV supervisor, still in the oil & gas industry, working for companies such as Comex, Travocean, SBM, etc.

I left the offshore industry to join the French broadcasting company CANAL+, who owned 2 manned submarines, to shoot movies down to 1000m depth.

Finally I worked few years in the cable industry before joining DOS.

How did you join Dos?

The “world of silence” is large but we know each other. A friend of mine I had met during my COMEX years offered me the seat of ROV supervisor. It was such a great opportunity, impossible to miss and I took the job.

Why are still working for DOS?

This is an unique opportunity. We are a very strong team from trainees to veterans (I am one of the latter). We share new knowledge coming from the youngsters, especially in high technology, and an old chap such as me may offer some experience from having been many years at sea and operating subsea. This is quite an efficient way to work.

Our daily activity, especially during and after a discovery, requires us to sort out all sorts of technical problems, many of which are new because we work down to 6000m water depth and few have experience of the issues which arise from that. We have to find the solutions and apply them.

There are an unbelievable series of feelings running from pride to fear each time our ROV operates on the seabed in ultra - deep water, especially on a wreck that’s just been discovered. This chance to be in the pilot seat at this precise time produce feelings which are indescribable. However, behind all this pleasure, we keep to a very high standard of professional behavior.

So I have a marvelous job and my colleagues appreciate working with me, so why stop?

Ratko Marceta - Master

What did you do before joining DOS?

All my life I have been tied to the sea. I started to sail in 1978 at 18 years of age and have continued until now. Since 1996 I have been working as Master on a wide range of vessels, including bulk, container and a variety of general types. In the last 8 years I have been working continuously with offshore marine specialist vessels. My latest posts before JLB were as Master & Chief Officer on board rig support /seismic /cable layer & accommodation vessels . Prior to these, I worked as Master on vessels for several different companies including 4 years as Port Captain in West Africa.

How did you join Dos?

Simple, I accepted an offer coming from the UK Crewing agency "Faststream" at the beginning of March 2012 for just 4 weeks. As you can see 4 weeks has become 3 years....and maybe much more ... What was my first mission? I was waiting on the quay in Walvis Bay when a vessel approached and berthed. I asked the people around me 'where is the vessel I am joining' of them replied 'in front of you, at 50 meters' - looking at the ship I checked my contract where it clearly stated "Cable lay ship" , DP 2,...etc. at that moment I was 90 % sure that I was going back home, but once I stepped on board I got a good feeling about this ship, and I still have.

Why are still working for DOS?

The first reason is the very friendly people who work with me, then everybody is professional in their jobs and everything is done to a high level with smiling faces all around, there is definitely NO STRESS, compared with other offshore vessels. JLB is like the cream on the cake of my 37 years of sea career. To be honest I planned to stay a maximum of 2 years but now I believe that the John Lethbridge will be my last vessel ending my carrier , tomorrow maybe or after more long years ahead.. who knows ?? It will all depend upon how the mighty John Lethbridge behaves as she gets older…

François Macé - Supervisor

What did you do before joining DOS?

Prior to joining DOS, I have a long career in the French Navy with a specialization in the search for objects on the seabed (mine countermeasures warfare)

After a specialization in acoustic detection and mine hunting; my last position led me to work at CEPHISMER* as ROV supervisor (ventilation of sub-marines in distress, expertise, wreck recovery, black box recovery).

How did you join DOS?

I was contacted by a retired French Navy officer who had already joined the company. After 28 years of service to the state, and based on my experience, the time had come to explore other aspects of this business.

After leaving the Navy in August 21st, 2010, I embarked seven days later on board DOS’s ship the John Lethbridge

Why are still working for DOS?

Working here is an unique opportunity to invest in an unusual adventure.

This is also the opportunity to use state of the art equipment and to contribute to this challenge which is deep ocean research.

Imagine a towed sonar, 8,000m behind you and 6,000m under your feet flying 150m above the seabed with a positioning accuracy to within just a few meters, seeking out the unknown in the middle of an empty ocean so far away from any human activity.

Imagine also a "flying" ROV moving around a wreck on her final resting place at 5800m depth and to re-discover her history a few decades after her loss.

Imagine also a cosmopolitan crew embarked on an "old lady" ship, united in the same joys and the same problems , as in a family; ;

Imagine all this and you will understand what my job is (6 month per year only!): Fascinating and exciting...

*CEPHISMER: Cellule d’Expertise Plongée Humaine et Intervention Sous la MER

Claire Samuel - Surveyor

What did you do before joining DOS?

I worked for more than 5 years in the cable industry (surveyor, cable repairs, cable route, site surveys, etc). I also worked as a surveyor and geophysicist in deep sea minerals exploration.

How did you join DOS?

I had followed the company’s progress for a long time and I have always wanted to get involved with them.

In 2011, I started mail exchanges with the head of the management team in order to look at recruitment possibilities and I finally got the chance to join the ship in May 2013.

Why are still working for DOS?

Working for DOS is really challenging and fascinating. Each rotation on board the R/V John Lethbridge is different from the previous one; each project is a new challenge. Since I started in DOS I have never stopped learning new skills in various domains, not only in subsea or survey but also in electronics and video for example.

I like working with DOS’s experienced people and sharing with them knowledge. Operating sonar and ROV in very deep sea conditions as we are doing is unique.

Cyrille Fuchs - ROV pilot

What did you do before joining DOS?

I began my professional career as a boiler-maker, learning from experienced workers how to make industrial structures formed and welded from different kinds of metals plates and profiles.

I travelled all around France changing cities and companies every year to learn different ways of working (including Germany), over a period of 9 years.

During this time I had a project to work underwater on offshore platforms. I became a commercial diver and my former experience as a boiler-maker helped me a lot when dealing with industrial underwater structure inspections, repairs and maintenance.

Once in the oil and gas industry as a commercial-diver I was made aware of the capabilities of ROVs and my next aim was set... becoming an ROV pilot and technician.

How did you join Dos?

I had been working for several companies and was at the time looking for another ROV job, when a certain Deep Ocean Search Ltd called me for an unexpected job, the salvage of a wreck using an ROV in ultra - deep water. It was much more than I ever imagined doing with an ROV.

DOS gave me this chance and I thank them for that.

Why are still working for DOS?

Nearly 2 years have now passed by with regular rotations and I feel like it's been only a few months. I found my place and DOS is happy with my work ... so why not!

My mission here is to pilot the 6000m depth - rated ROV for seabed or debris surveys and shipwreck identifications and even salvage of shipwreck cargo. As a technician I'm also in charge of the maintenance of the ROV and the LARS systems onboard (sonar and ROV.)

DOS gave me the opportunity to expand my skills by working on the different tasks using our deep sea towed fish MAK IX-II on sonar operations too. Working with the expert DOS team on one of the best sonars in the world to find wrecks in the abyss is for me fascinating.

Since I am part of DOS I participate in many projects over the world and the company is always looking ahead. A lot more projects are coming and each one is a new challenge.

Jeremie Morizet - Subsea Equipments Manager

What did you do before joining DOS?

After three years studying in the French Institute of Marine Sciences INTECHMER*, I joined Comex SA in Marseille for my first work experience. I spent two years working on various coastal survey operations and shipwreck research campaigns such as the UNESCO - related project ARCHEOMAR or the Ré d'Italia mission (battle of Lissa) in collaboration with the Croatian government.

How did you join DOS?

In 2005, I was affected by Comex to the Comex Deep Sea Salvage project (CDSS) in order to mobilise a brand new ultra-deep survey spread (developed in partnership with IXSea), turning the ice breaker John Lethbridge into a state of the art abyssal research vessel. John Kingsford then offered me the chance to permanently join the company.

Since then I have stayed with the same team through different projects: Indian Ocean Exploration (IOE) in 2009 for various survey operations in Madagascar, then with DOS since 2010, back on the SV John Lethbridge.

Why are you still working for DOS?

Facing the bows of a massive shipwreck lost in the middle of nowhere, 5km below the surface, flying over the abyssal plain around these forgotten relics of the past is a real opportunity and an unique experience.

To achieve their goals, DOS keeps on pushing equipment limits forward, designing new tools and procedures, multiplying partnerships and entering into special developments with subsea manufacturers. This permanent and challenging atmosphere is very motivating for all of us.

Unlike in the offshore oil and gas industry, DOS’s polyvalent organization allows each agent to move from his specialized task to another: sonar, ROV, navigation, post processing, deck maneuvers, IT, communications, electronics; breaking the routine at any time, keeping everyone aware, involved and concentrated in a comprehensive chain, never being blocked by a missing specialist!

Finally, DOS is an old team knowing each other so well, using common work methods and sharing experience in a friendly atmosphere over the last 10 years or more.

* INTECHMER: Institut National des Sciences et Techniques de la Mer (Cherbourg-France.)


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