Scuba diving

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Scuba diving
Scuba diving is a form of underwater diving in which a diver uses a scuba set to breathe underwater.[1] Unlike earlier diving, which relied either on breath-hold or on air pumped from the surface, scuba divers carry their own source of breathing gas, (usually compressed air),[2] allowing them greater freedom of movement than with an air line. Both surface supplied and scuba diving allow divers to stay underwater significantly longer than with breath-holding techniques as used in free-diving. A scuba diver usually moves around underwater by using swimfins attached to the feet, but external propulsion can be provided by a diver propulsion vehicle, or a sled pulled from the surface.
Scuba diver

in which compressed air carried in back mounted cylinders is inhaled through a demand regulator and then exhaled into the water adjacent to the tank[3].Scuba diving 2 History The first commercially successful scuba sets were the Aqualung twin hose open-circuit units developed by Emile Gagnan and Jacques-Yves Cousteau. paramedical service or lifeguard unit. The single hose two stage scuba regulators of today trace their origins to Australia. In some cases diver rescue teams may also be part of a fire department. but is now generally used as a common noun or adjective. in which exhaled oxygen is passed through an absorbent chemical to remove carbon dioxide before being breathed again. and may be classed as public service diving. many police forces operate police diving teams to perform search and recovery or search and rescue operations and to assist with the detection of crime which may involve bodies of water. divemasters and dive guides. with particular reference to responsibility for health and safety of the clients. 4: Harness. Some of these tasks are suitable for scuba. who set out to document the underwater world. The open circuit compressed air systems were developed after Cousteau had a number of incidents of oxygen toxicity using an oxygen rebreather. developed during World War II by Christian J. infiltration behind enemy lines. wreck diving. Lambertsen for underwater warfare. 2: Mouthpiece. there are professional divers involved with the water itself. Modern versions of rebreather systems (both semi-closed circuit and closed circuit) are available.[6] It has become acceptable to refer to "scuba equipment" or "scuba apparatus"—examples of the linguistic RAS syndrome. Lastly. giving the diver air at the pressure at his mouth. Diving activities associated with scuba Scuba diving may be performed for a number of reasons. including marine biology. 5: Back plate. such as cave diving. full or part time.[7][8] Other specialist areas of diving include military diving. Divers may be employed professionally to perform tasks underwater. not that at the top of the cylinder. ice diving and deep diving. assistant instructors. Etymology Original Aqualung scuba set. 6: Tank The term "SCUBA" (an acronym for self-contained underwater breathing apparatus) originally referred to United States combat frogmen's oxygen rebreathers. known as the Porpoise. and form the second main type of scuba unit. both personal and professional. 3: Regulator. where Ted Eldred developed the first example of this typeof regulator. such as underwater photography or underwater filming divers. 1: Air Hose. There are a fair number of divers who work.[2][4][5] "SCUBA" was originally an acronym. In some jurisdictions the professional nature. They can perform roles including direct combat. of recreational diver instruction. which was developed because patents protected the Aqualung's twin hose design. . in the recreational diving community as instructors. bomb disposal or engineering operations. dive leadership for reward and dive guiding is recognised by national legislation. "scuba". mostly used for technical and military diving. In civilian operations. or scientific diving. with a long history of military frogmen in various roles. placing mines or using a manned torpedo. Recreational diving is performed purely for enjoyment and has a number of distinct technical disciplines to increase interest underwater. The single hose regulator separates the cylinder from the demand valve.

geology. hydrology. manned torpedo media diving: making television programs. harbors. naval technical. lobsters. recreational. hydrology. diving physiology and medicine) underwater archaeology (shipwrecks. etc. frogman. military professional. military. scientific commercial. public service recreational military scientific. recreational scientific 3 diver training fish farm maintenance (aquaculture) fishing. and buildings) underwater inspections and surveys (occasionally) underwater photography underwater tour guiding underwater tourism scientific. mine clearance and bomb disposal. recreational professional. sea crayfish. palaeontology. naval recreational police diving.Scuba diving geology. naval public safety. Where the diver requires mobility and a large range of movement. e. oceanography and underwater archaeology. leisure. recreational recreational . naval. sport policing/security: diving to investigate or arrest unauthorized divers search and recovery diving search and rescue diving spear fishing stealthy infiltration surveys and mapping scientific diving (marine biology. Diving activities commonly associated with scuba may include: Type of diving activity aquarium maintenance in large public aquariums boat and ship inspection. disposing of unexploded ordnance pleasure. scientific professional commercial commercial military professional military. crabs. The choice between scuba and surface supplied diving equipment is based on both legal and logistical constraints. recreational commercial. scuba is usually the choice if safety and legal constraints allow. scallops. Higher risk work.g. oceanography. cleaning and maintenance cave diving Classification commercial. for abalones. may be restricted to surface supplied equipment by legislation and codes of practice. police diving police. particularly commercial diving.

[2] By always providing the appropriate breathing gas at ambient pressure. modern demand valve regulators ensure the diver can inhale and exhale naturally and without excessive effort. in which the cylinder pressure was reduced to ambient pressure in one or two stages which were all in the housing mounted to the cylinder valve or manifols. known as the Aqua-lung. Open-circuit regulator The most commonly used scuba set today is the "single-hose" open circuit 2-stage diving regulator. inhaling from a regulator's mouthpiece becomes second nature very quickly. Aqualung Legacy regulator Gekko dive computer with attached pressure gauge and compass . The "single-hose" system has significant advantages over the original system for most applications.7 pounds per square inch) for every 33 feet (10 m) of depth—so the pressure of the inhaled breath must almost exactly counter the surrounding or ambient pressure to inflate the lungs. connected to a single high pressure gas cylinder. except when wearing a full face diving mask.[2] Although the feasibility of filling and artificially ventilating the lungs with a dedicated liquid (liquid breathing) has been established for some time. in addition to the normal atmospheric pressure. with the first stage connected to the cylinder valve and the second stage at the mouthpiece. regardless of depth.[9] the size and complexity of the equipment allows only for medical applications with current technology.[1] This arrangement differs from Emile Gagnan's and Jacques Cousteau's original 1942 "twin-hose" design. the diver cannot breathe in through the nose. It becomes virtually impossible to breathe unpressurised air through a tube below three feet under the water. Because the diver's nose and eyes are covered by a diving mask. Humans lack gills and do not otherwise have the capacity to breathe underwater unaided by external devices.Scuba diving 4 Breathing underwater Water normally contains the dissolved oxygen from which fish and other aquatic animals extract all their required oxygen as the water flows past their gills. water exerts increasing pressure on the chest and lungs—approximately 1 bar (14. As one descends. However.[10] Early diving experimenters quickly discovered it is not enough simply Scuba diver on reef to supply air to breathe comfortably underwater.

delivers the breathing gas at ambient pressure to the diver's mouth. Planning decompression requirements requires a more . Aqualung 1st stage Suunto pressure gauge close up Rebreather Less common are closed circuit (CCR) and semi-closed (SCR) rebreathers. the first stage regulator reduces the cylinder pressure of up to about 240 bar (3000 psi) to an intermediate level of about 10 bar (145 psi) above ambient pressure. so it can be increased to a safe continuous maximum. which reduces the inert gas (nitrogen and/or helium) partial pressure in the breathing loop. Minimising the inert gas loading of the diver's tissues for a given dive profile reduces the decompression An Inspiration electronic fully closed circuit rebreather obligation.Scuba diving 5 In the "single-hose" two-stage design. or changes a fixed percentage of the respired volume. process each exhaled breath for re-use by removing the carbon dioxide and replacing the oxygen used by the diver. The exhaled gases are exhausted directly to the environment as waste.[1] photography. The first modern rebreather was the MK-19 that was developed at S-Tron by Ralph Osterhout and used the first electronic control system. and special training and correct maintenance are required for them to be safely used. supplied by a low pressure hose from the first stage. and other applications. The first stage typically has at least one outlet port delivering breathing gas at unreduced tank pressure.[11] which unlike open-circuit sets that vent off all exhaled gases. This is connected to the diver's submersible pressure gauge or dive computer. this has advantages for research. Rebreathers are more complex and more expensive than open-circuit scuba.[11] In a closed-circuit rebreather the oxygen partial pressure in the rebreather is controlled. This requires continuous monitoring of actual partial pressures with time and for maximum effectiveness requires real-time computer processing by the diver's decompression computer. divers can stay down longer or decompress faster. Rebreathers release little or no gas bubbles into the water. military. to show how much breathing gas remains in the cylinder. so the partial pressure of oxygen at any time during the dive depends on the diver's oxygen consumption or breathing rate. as a result. A semi-closed circuit rebreather injects a constant flow of a fixed nitrox mixture into the breathing loop. and use much less stored gas volume for an equivalent depth and time because exhaled oxygen is recovered. The second stage demand valve regulator. due to the larger variety of potential failure modes. Decompression can be much reduced compared to fixed ratio gas mixes used in other scuba systems and.

6 Gas mixtures For some diving. These different gas mixtures may be used to extend bottom time. this is useful for underwater photography. and for covert work. and when the nitrogen is fully substituted by helium. A common misconception is that nitrox can reduce narcosis. The increased oxygen levels in nitrox help reduce the risk of decompression sickness.Scuba diving conservative approach for a SCR than for a CCR. often with 32% or 36% oxygen. but research has shown that oxygen is also narcotic. For technical dives. The most commonly used mixture is Nitrox. and thus less nitrogen. reduce inert gas narcotic effects. Nitrox cylinder marked up for use showing maximum safe operating depth (MOD) A cylinder decal to indicate that the contents are a Nitrox mixture . gas mixtures other than normal atmospheric air (21% oxygen. Because rebreathers produce very few bubbles. they do not disturb marine life or make a diver’s presence known at the surface. below the maximum operating depth of the mixture. however. the increased partial pressure of oxygen can lead to an unacceptable risk of oxygen toxicity. 1% trace gases) can be used. typically designated as Travel. To displace nitrogen without the increased oxygen concentration.[1][2] so long as the diver is properly trained in their use. Bottom. and all need specialized training for safe use. The reduced nitrogen may also allow for no stops or shorter decompression stop times and a shorter surface interval between dives. and Decompression gases. and reduce decompression times. which is air with extra oxygen. but decompression computers with a real time oxygen partial pressure input can optimise decompression for these systems. other diluents can be used.[12][13] Several other common gas mixtures are in use. some of the cylinders may contain different gas mixtures for the various phases of the dive. heliox. reducing the likelihood of decompression sickness or allowing longer exposure to the same pressure for equal risk. usually helium. 78% nitrogen. when the resultant three gas mixture is called trimix. also referred to as Enriched Air Nitrox (EAN).

they try to achieve neutral buoyancy. . It is changed by small differences in ambient pressure caused by a change in depth. a tropical coral reef). Streamlining dive gear will reduce drag and improve mobility. The equivalent effect applies to a small ascent. that force is upwards. dry or semi-dry suits are used depending on the water temperature) and buoyancy compensators can be used to adjust the overall buoyancy.[2] Ignoring other forces such as water currents and swimming. the diver's overall buoyancy determines whether he ascends or descends. and expand again as the diver ascends. Buoyancy compensators allow easy and fine adjustments in the diver's overall volume and therefore buoyancy. and unless counteracted. The diver must continuously adjust buoyancy or depth in order to remain neutral. The density of fresh water is about 3% less than that of ocean water.g. This is a skill which improves with practice until it becomes second nature. causing buoyancy changes. Controlling buoyancy underwater To dive safely. if the result is positive. For open circuit divers. diving suits (wet. The removal ("ditching" or "shedding") of diver weighting systems can be used to reduce the diver's weight and cause a buoyant ascent in an emergency. changes in the diver's average lung volume during a breathing cycle can be used to make fine adjustments of buoyancy. Equipment such as diving weighting systems.[1] When divers want to remain at constant depth. Personal mobility is enhanced by swimfins and Diver Propulsion Vehicles. which will compress the gas filled spaces and reduce the total volume of diver and equipment. Diving in different environments also necessitates adjustments in the amount of weight carried to achieve neutral buoyancy. This will further reduce the buoyancy. Diving suits made of compressible materials decrease in volume as the diver descends. The buoyancy of any object immersed in water is also affected by the density of the water. The diver can inject air into dry suits to counteract the compression effect and squeeze. A small descent will increase the pressure.g. divers must control their rate of descent and ascent in the water. Diver under the Salt Pier in Bonaire. divers who are neutrally buoyant at one dive destination (e.Scuba diving 7 Diver mobility The diver needs to be mobile underwater.[14] Therefore. which will trigger an increased buoyancy and will result in accelerated ascent unless counteracted. a fresh water lake) will predictably be positively or negatively buoyant when using the same equipment at destinations with different water densities (e. will result in sinking more rapidly. Neutral buoyancy in a diver is a metastable state. The buoyancy force on the diver is the weight of the volume of the liquid that he and his equipment displace minus the weight of the diver and his equipment. This minimizes gas consumption caused by swimming to maintain depth. and the change has a positive feedback effect.

Scuba diving 8 Underwater vision Water has a higher refractive index than air – similar to that of the cornea of the eye. so the color that is least absorbed by water is blue light. A diver wearing an Ocean Reef full face mask (This also affects underwater photography: a camera seeing through a flat port in its housing is affected in the same way as its user's eye seeing through a flat mask viewport.[1][15] Light underwater Water preferentially absorbs red light. yellow and green light. Swimming goggles are not suitable for diving because they only cover the eyes and thus do not allow for equalization. not for the real distance. This leads to very severe hypermetropia. but this causes a refraction problem of its own. and to a lesser extent.[1] The refraction error created by the water is mostly corrected as the light travels from water to air through a flat lens. Commando frogmen concerned about revealing their position when light reflects from the glass surface of their diving masks may instead use special contact lenses to see underwater. he must periodically exhale through his nose to equalize the internal pressure of the mask with that of the surrounding water. Therefore total field-of-view is significantly reduced and eye–hand coordination must be adjusted. therefore.[16] Table of Light Absorption in pure water Color Average wavelength Approximate depth of total absorption 25 m 100 m 275 m 110 m 50 m 20 m 5m 3m Ultraviolet 300 nm Violet Blue Green Yellow Orange Red Infra-red 400 nm 475 nm 525 nm 575 nm 600 nm 685 nm 800 nm . except that objects appear approximately 34% bigger and 25% closer in salt water than they actually are. Diving masks and hemets solve this problem by providing an air space in front of the diver's eyes. As a diver descends. A "double-dome-ported mask" has curved viewports in an attempt to cure these faults. People with severe myopia. and so its operator must focus for the apparent distance to target. Failure to equalise the pressure inside the mask may lead to a form of barotrauma known as mask squeeze. Light entering the cornea from water is hardly refracted at all. Generic and custom corrective lenses are available for some two-window masks. Custom lenses can be bonded onto masks that have a single front window or two windows.) Divers who need corrective lenses to see clearly outside the water would normally need the same prescription while wearing a mask. leaving only the eye's crystalline lens to focus light. can see better underwater without a mask than normal-sighted people.

using hand signals. DISTRESS Indicates immediate aid required. fingers together. OK! or OK? 6. This is the opposite of OK! The signal does not indicate emergency. When answering signals 7 & 9. the receiver should approach to offer aid to signaler. A diver with only one free arm may make this signal by extending that arm overhead with finger tips touching top of head to make the O shape. Signal Hand raised. palm down. 4. 3. then hand rocking back and forth on axis of forearm. 5. 10. Indicates that the signaler cannot breathe. GO UP or GOING UP OK! or OK? Divers wearing mittens may not be able to extend 3 remaining fingers distinctly. palm to receiver. Hand slashing or chopping throat. Hand flat. Two divers giving the sign that they are "OK" on a wreck in the Dominican Republic. All signals are to be answered by the receivers repeating the signal as sent. Table of Hand Signals No. 8. LOW ON AIR OUT OF AIR DANGER Indicates signaler's air supply is reduced. Fist pounding on chest. Thumb extended downward from clenched fist.[17] . 9. thumb sticking out. Signal is for long-range use. Meaning STOP Comment Transmitted in the same way as a traffic police officer’s STOP 2. Clenched fist on arm extended in direction of danger. Two arms extended overhead with finger tips touching above head to make a large O shape. 1. Thumb and forefinger making a circle with three remaining fingers extended (if possible). Hand waving over head (may also thrash hand on water).Scuba diving 9 Underwater communication A diver cannot talk underwater unless he is wearing a full-face mask. SOMETHING IS WRONG 7. fingers pointed up. but divers can communicate. GO DOWN or GOING DOWN Thumb extended upward from clenched fist.

the diver equalizes the pressure in all air spaces with the surrounding water pressure when changing depth.Scuba diving 10 Hazards of scuba diving According to a 1970 North American study. where they will accumulate until saturated. At this point. it must be equalized by inflation and deflation. will automatically release gas as it expands and retain a virtually constant volume during ascent. As a consequence of the reducing partial pressure of inert gases in the lungs during ascent. However when the pressure is reduced during ascent. During descent the dry suit must be inflated manually. bubbles may form and grow in the tissues. If a drysuit is worn.[19] A big difference between the risks of driving and diving is that the diver is less at risk from fellow divers than the driver is from other drivers. and thence carried to the other tissues of the body. and may cause damage . Most dry suits are fitted with an auto-dump valve. which. The problem arises when the pressure is reduced more quickly than the gas can be removed by this mechanism. diving was (on a man-hours based criteria) 96 times more dangerous than driving an automobile. The requisite skills are acquired by training and education.3 kPa (14. Effects of breathing high pressure gas Decompression sickness The prolonged exposure to breathing gases at high partial pressure will result in increased amounts of non-metabolic gases. Injuries due to changes in pressure Divers must avoid injuries caused by changes in pressure. The weight of the water column above the diver causes an increase in pressure in proportion to depth. and diving hazards.in severe cases causing a ruptured lung. which is referred to as clearing the ears.[18] According to a 2000 Japanese study. The scuba mask (half-mask) is equalized during descent by periodically exhaling through the nose. usually nitrogen and/or helium.7 pounds-force per square inch) at sea level. the amount of dissolved inert gas that can be held in stable solution in the tissues is reduced. To avoid barotrauma. safe diving practices. reducing the loading of the tissues. As long as this process is gradual. The reduced gas concentration in the blood has a similar effect when it passes through tissues carrying a higher concentration. During ascent it will automatically equalise by leaking excess air round the edges. A helmet or full face mask will automatically equalise as any pressure differential will either vent through the exhaust valve or open the demand valve and release air into the low pressure space. which can cause the surrounding material or tissues to be stressed. Although there are many dangers involved in scuba diving. if set correctly. the dissolved gas will be diffused back from the bloodstream to the gas in the lungs and exhaled. (referred to in this context as inert gases) dissolving in the bloodstream as it passes through the alveolar capillaries. and the level of supersaturation rises sufficiently to become unstable. with the risk of injury if the stress gets too high. eardrum or damage to the sinuses. The middle ear and sinus are equalized using one or more of several techniques. much like a buoyancy compensator. and honed by practice. Pressure injuries are called barotrauma[2] and can be quite painful. and kept at the high point of the diver by good trim skills. divers can decrease the risks through proper procedures and appropriate equipment. Open-water certification programs highlight diving physiology. every hour of recreational diving is 36 to 62 times riskier than automobile driving. even potentially fatal . all will go well and the diver will reduce the gas loading by diffusion and perfusion until it eventually re-stabilises at the current saturation pressure. This saturation process has very little immediate effect on the diver. in the same way that the weight of the column of atmospheric air above the surface causes a pressure of 101. but do not provide the diver with sufficient practice to become truly adept. and that gas will diffuse back into the bloodsteam. This variation of pressure with depth will cause compressible materials and gas filled spaces to tend to change volume. This effect is described by Henry's Law.

or "laughing gas. although death or permanent disability may still occur. For more information. but are not completely reliable. The procedure of making stops is called staged decompression. Administering enriched-oxygen breathing gas or pure oxygen to a decompression sickness stricken diver on the surface is a good form of first aid for decompression sickness. Narcosis starts to affect some divers at 66 feet (20 m). loss of coordination and lack of concentration.[3] Nitrogen narcosis occurs quickly and the symptoms typically disappear during the ascent.[21] For deep dives—generally past 180 feet (55 m). anxiety. and the stops are called decompression stops. Definitive treatment is usually recompression in a recompression chamber with hyperbaric oxygen treatment. This effect is called decompression sickness[2] or 'the bends'. shutting off blood supply to the downstream side. diving with trimix or heliox dramatically reduces the effects of inert gas narcosis. it is generally recognized that Oxygen toxicity is preventable if one never exceeds an oxygen partial pressure of 1. and must be avoided by reducing the pressure on the body slowly while ascending and allowing the inert gases dissolved in the tissues to be eliminated while still in solution. Being "narced" can impair judgment and make diving very dangerous. and resulting in hypoxia of those tissues. narcosis manifests itself as a slight giddiness. At extreme depths. and the dive history of the casualty. and is done by restricting the ascent (decompression) rate to one where the level of supersaturation is not sufficient for bubbles to form. 11 . and can even vary from dive to dive under identical conditions. Almost all divers are able to notice the effects by 132 feet (40 meters). This is done by controlling the speed of ascent and making periodic stops to allow gases to be eliminated. At this depth.[2] The mechanism is similar to that of nitrous oxide. The effects increase drastically with the increase in depth. Decompression stops that are not computed as strictly necessary are called safety stops. It affects individual divers at varying depths and conditions. so that divers often fail to realize they were ever affected. Exact details will depend on severity and type of symptoms. which can result in the diver spitting out his regulator and drowning. divers use "hypoxic blends" containing a lower percentage of oxygen than atmospheric air. This process is known as "off-gassing"." administered as anesthesia. see oxygen toxicity. or blocking small blood vessels. hallucinogenic reaction and tunnel vision can occur.4 bar.[20] Nitrogen narcosis Nitrogen narcosis or inert gas narcosis is a reversible alteration in consciousness producing a state similar to alcohol intoxication in divers who breathe high pressure gas at depth. and reduce the risk of bubble formation further. However. At these depths divers may feel euphoria. While the exact limit is idiomatic. Jacques Cousteau famously described it as the "rapture of the deep".Scuba diving either by distending the tissue locally.[2] In extreme cases it affects the central nervous system and causes a seizure. response to treatment. Dive computers or decompression tables are used to determine a relatively safe ascent profile. Oxygen toxicity Oxygen toxicity occurs when oxygen in the body exceeds a safe partial pressure (PPO2). Decompression sickness must be treated as soon as practicable. There remains a statistical possibility of decompression bubbles forming even when the guidance from tables or computer has been followed exactly.

These drysuits function more like a membrane suit. Provided the wetsuit is reasonably well-sealed at all openings (neck. however on deeper dives the neoprene can compress to as little as 2 mm thus losing a proportion of its insulation. Drysuit undergarments are usually worn under a drysuit to keep a layer of air inside the suit for better thermal insulation. and to a larger extent the nitrogen gas. generally nitrogen. The effectiveness of the insulation is reduced when the suit is compressed due to depth. the suit is designed to minimize heat loss. The neoprene. these require an undersuit. because of its better insulation as compared with air. In all but the warmest waters. . which can lead to hypothermia even in mild water temperatures. Usually this bottle contains argon gas. both systems have their good and bad points but generally their thermal properties can be reduced to: • Membrane or Shell drysuits: usually a trilaminate construction. trapped in it during the manufacturing process. • Neoprene drysuits: a similar construction to wetsuits. owing to the thinness of the material (around 1 mm). it does exactly what the name implies: keeps a diver dry. in this case acts as an insulator. Compressed or crushed neoprene may also be used (where the neoprene is pre-compressed to 2–3 mm) which avoids the variation of insulating properties with depth.[2] Symptoms of hypothermia include impaired judgment and dexterity. this reduces flow of cold water over the surface of the skin.Scuba diving 12 Hazards of the diving environment Loss of body heat Water conducts heat from the diver 25 times[22] better than air. as the nitrogen filled bubbles are then smaller and conduct heat better.[23] which can quickly become deadly in an aquatic environment. The suit is waterproof and sealed so that frigid water cannot penetrate the suit. Wetsuits are usually made of neoprene that has small closed gas cells. Some divers carry an extra gas bottle dedicated to filling the dry suit. The second way in which wetsuits reduce heat loss is to trap a thin layer of water between the diver's skin and the insulating suit itself.[1] In the case of a wetsuit. which helps keep the diver warm (this is the principle employed in the use of a "Semi-Dry" wetsuit) In the case of a drysuit. divers need the thermal insulation provided by wetsuits or drysuits. Drysuits fall into two main categories: neoprene and membrane. ankles zippers and overlaps with other suit components). Body heat then heats the trapped water. wrists. these are often Spring suit (short legs and sleeves) and steamer considerably thicker (7–8 mm) and have sufficient insulation to (full legs and sleeves) allow a lighter-weight undersuit (or none at all). usually of high insulation value if diving in cooler water. The Dry suit for reducing exposure poor thermal conductivity of this expanded cell neoprene means that wetsuits reduce loss of body heat by conduction to the surrounding water. and thereby reduces loss of body heat by convection.[24] Dry suits should not be inflated with gases containing helium as it is a good thermal conductor.

and/or entering overhead environments (caves or wrecks) • Surface supplied diving – use of umbilical gas supply and diving helmets. which consequently may develop into major incidents. Diving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. stress injuries or exhaustion. increased risk of hypothermia and increased risk of decompression sickness. high gas consumption. Diving with an incompetent buddy can result in injury or death while attempting to deal with a problem caused by the buddy. and could lead to over-exertion. or metal debris commonly found on shipwrecks. coral. Use of inappropriate equipment and/or configuration can lead to a whole range of complications. reduced ability to deal timeously with problems. or with a hangover may result in inappropriate or delayed response to contingencies. and this can lead to uncontrolled descent. 13 Hazards inherent in the diver Diver behaviour and competence Inadequate learning or practice of critical safety skills may result in the inability to deal with minor incidents. inability to establish neutral buoyancy. depending on the details. leading to greater risk of developing into an accident. particularly at decompression stops. Underweighting can cause difficulty in neutralising and controlling buoyancy. with high risk of accident due to inability to deal with known environmental hazards.[1] .Scuba diving Injuries due to contact with the solid surroundings Diving suits also help prevent the diver's skin being damaged by rough or sharp underwater objects. and consequent inability to achieve neutral buoyancy. overtiredness. poor trim. Overconfidence can result in diving in conditions beyond the diver's competence. Peer pressure can cause a diver to dive in conditions where he may be unable to deal with reasonably predictable incidents. Diving longer and deeper safely There are a number of techniques to increase the diver's ability to dive deeper and longer: • Technical diving – diving deeper than 40 metres (130 ft). using mixed gases. marine animals. difficulty in ascent and inability to control depth accurately for decompression. Inadequate strength or fitness for the conditions can result in inability to compensate for difficult conditions even though the diver may be well versed at the required skills. inefficient swimming. kicking up silt.[1] • Saturation diving – long-term use of underwater habitats under pressure and a gradual release of pressure over several days in a decompression chamber at the end of a dive. Overweighting can cause difficulty in neutralising and controlling buoyancy.

however. and is mostly self regulated. SDI is the recreational division focusing on new methods and online courses. International Training SDI. and many diving related sales and rental outlets require proof of diver certification from one of these organizations prior to selling or renting certain diving products or services.Scuba diving 14 Scuba diver training and certification agencies Recreational scuba diving does not have a centralized certifying or regulatory agency. provided by Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA). the World Underwater Federation National Association of Underwater Instructors (NAUI) – based in the United States Professional Diving Instructors Corporation (PDIC) – based in the United States Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) – based in the United States. several large diving organizations that train and certify divers and dive instructors. largest recreational dive training and certification organization in the world Scottish Sub Aqua Club (SSAC or ScotSAC) [27] the National Governing Body for the sport of diving in Scotland. and ERDi is the public safety component.based in the United States. Scuba Schools International (SSI) – based in the United States with 35 Regional Centers and Area Offices around the globe. • • . founded in 1953 and is the largest dive club in the world • European Committee of Professional Diving Instructors (CEDIP) [26] based in Europe since 1992 (see Cedip on French Wiki pages) • • • • • • Confédération Mondiale des Activités Subaquatiques (CMAS). California • British Sub Aqua Club (BSAC) – based in the United Kingdom. YMCA Scuba – based in the United States. The largest international certification agencies that are currently recognized by most diving outlets for diver certification include: • American Canadian Underwater Certifications (ACUC) [25] (formerly Association of Canadian Underwater Councils) – originated in Canada in 1969 and expanded internationally in 1984 Diving lessons in Monterey Bay. There are. TDI & ERDi [28] . discontinued after 2008. TDI is the world's largest technical diving agency.

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ISBN 0-9538919-4-1 • The Club 1953-2003.htm) External links • Divers Alert Network (http://www. III called Diving With Deep-Six (http://www. translated as The Silent World. com/ [28] http:/ / www. (2002) The Diving Manual. (2008) Open Water Diver Manual. ISBN 0-9538919-2-5 • Dive Leading. ASIN B000QRK890 • Ellerby D. Hamish Hamilton Ltd.Y.Scuba diving [26] http:/ / www. London. ASIN B004JZYO0E • Free Scuba textbook by George D. BSAC. scotsac. PADI. tdisdi. Campbell.deep-six.org/)—Diving Emergencies/Hyperbaric Chamber Assistance • Scuba diving travel guide from Wikitravel . BSAC. com 16 Further reading • Cousteau J. org/ [27] http:/ / www. cedip. British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC). (1953) Le Monde du Silence. ISBN 0-9538919-5-X • Richardson D.com/ page50.diversalertnetwork..

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