Like all sports Scuba diving has it's own set of risks and dangers. You've probably heard some of the horror stories about Scuba related injuries and fatalities. In more cases than not these accidents could be easily avoided by remembering your training and using good judgement. This post is intended to give you some ideas of how to become a safer diver in 2011, this post is good advice for everyone but really aimed at those who don't dive frequently and aren't perhaps as experienced as others.
1. Consider your personal fitness:Consider how fit you actually are before jumping in the water, if you are sick or recovering from illness don't dive without thinking it through, only dive when you are 100%. If you haven't dived for some time be sure in yourself that you are ready to go diving. Yes, diving in general is a very relaxed sport but recoving from any illness or being unfit is going to impede on your ability to dive safely, so just bear your general fitness in mind.
2. Remember your training: At all times remember your training. Watch your buoyancy, equalize properly, never breath hold, do your safety stops, dive with a buddy, do your pre-dive safety checks, ascend slowly. You are taught these things for a reason. If you are feeling a little rusty then practice these skills in a safe environment like a swimming pool or similar with other competent divers to ensure your safety. Ensuring you are practiced at the skills you learned in your training will make you a much safer diver and make you quicker to react if anything unexpected happens whilst you are diving.
3. Dive within your limits: Always dive within your limits, a rookie mistake is to dive into situations outside your comfort zone. Consider the environment before you go diving so you don't find yourself in trouble. For instance diving a wreck and getting caught by a strong current is not fun even for the experienced, let alone a novice diver. If you already have started a dive and you are struggling with the conditions then just stop the dive. Even if others are trying to talk you into diving at the end of the day you are responsible for your own safety.
4. Have the right equipment for an emergency: Having your own independent air source in the form of a pony cylinder and dedicated regulator really does minimise the likelihood of having problems whilst diving. If your primary regulator where to fail whilst diving this could cause a serious problem, having a backup regulator takes this problem away even when diving with a buddy. And it needn't cost you much either you can buy a low end regulator and pony cylinder for not a lot of money. Also always carry a SMB (surface marker buoy) for signalling on the surface.
5. Consider a rescue diver course: A rescue diver course teaches you how to help yourself and others safely and gives you a much better appreciation and awareness of the dangers associated with diving and how to avoid them. If you are interested in becoming a rescue diver then please contact us.