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Thursday, 17 July 2014

5 quick tips for Scuba Diving anywhere

As Scuba Divers, we do tend to get around a bit and there are always new places we want to add to the "bucket list". So, I thought I would share five quick tips that will help you dive anywhere in the world.

There are many other things to add to the list, so please feel free to add your contribution to the diving community in the comments below...
  1. GET AN ORIENTATION

  2. We do believe that when you are diving somewhere new, it is best to get an orientation from a diver that knows the site well.

    Most commonly, this comes in the guise of a guided dive. The dive resort/dive centre hires you a guide to take you around the local dive sites and they can point out the things of interest and any potential hazards.

    It is also nice because the guide will help remind you about decompression limits and air supply, reminding you to check them frequently while you are diving.

    If it is not possible to get a guided dive, at least ask someone who has been diving there before. You will enjoy the dive more if you have prior knowledge of what to expect, what you are looking for and how to stay safe.

  3. DRESS FOR THE OCCASION

  4. Different places require different equipment depending upon the conditions and once you have had an orientation about the conditions, you should know what to expect.

    There is no point turning up in Cyprus in August with a drysuit and thick thermals, as you will end up overheating. Equally, where sea diving in the UK may require reels, DSMBs, torches, compasses, pony bottles and all the other life saving pieces of equipment that leave you looking like a tree at Christmas, here in Cyprus, the bulk of the diving does not require this kind of kit.

    So, do yourself (and your wallet if you are trying to fly) a favour and find out what trimmings are needed before you pack them all up.



  5. HAVE A BASIC TOOL KIT


  6. Every diver that does not want to be caught short on a dive should carry a small, basic tool box.


    Many has been the time, we have been out and about to be asked if we happen to have an Allen Key, spanner, screwdriver or some simple tool that doesn't take up much room but can mean the difference between making the dive and having to cancel.

    Even something as simple as; Schraeder Valve Removal Tool, Allen Keys (Imperial and Metric because you never know), a couple adjustable spanners, O-Rings in various sizes and a pick to remove them safely, spare hoses and good old faithful Tie Wraps should see you through most situations in a pinch.

  7. DSMB

  8. DSMBS are an extremely useful tool to have at your disposal. They can mark you out for boat traffic and allow you to make an ascent from practically anywhere by providing a reference line to the surface.Some areas for diving, it is mandatory that you carry them but I have seen many divers with them attached with no clue how they work!

    Setting off a DSMB is now taught in a PADI Open Water course as a compulsory skill and those of you who have been diving for years without ever using a DSMB should get caught up by asking an instructor or buddy to show you how it is done. You do not need a course, just a demonstration and a bit of practice but this is definitely a skill every diver should have.

  9. KNOW THE EMERGENCY PROCEDURES

  10. God forbid something goes wrong on a dive but unfortunately, it does happen sometimes. Even if you have been diving safely for years with no incidents at all, there is always a first time.
    If something happens on your dives, would you know how to handle it?
    Get the number of the Emergency Medical Services for the area you are diving in and, of course, the local hyperbaric chamber. In this day and age of mobile phones, you don't usually need to locate a nearby pay phone but it is always useful to know in case you find yourself without signal.
    How far away is the nearest chamber and do you have your own Oxygen Kit in case of emergencies?
    In water, make sure to practice your emergency procedures because, although these are skills we all hope we will never need, in the unlikely event of an emergency, you want to make sure you and your buddy are up to the task.
As I mentioned at the start, these are just 5 little tips to help make your diving anywhere in the world a little easier, a little safer and I hope you find them useful. Please add your own contributions in the comments below and whatever else, DIVE SAFE!