SCUBA DIVING SAFETY

Do you snorkel safely and are you now tempted to try scuba diving? Check out the safety rules!

Despite the fact that you're surely a confirmed snorkeler, the transition between these two sports must not be done without good preparation. Discover all of the Subea tips for safe diving.

Scuba diving is a sport that can involve risks, so several precautions must be taken. First precaution : get trained and make sure that you’re well supervised. Second : take care of your equipment to avoid accidents.

An experienced diver’s checklist!

 

1

ANTICIPATE THE RISKS RELATED TO SCUBA DIVING

Scuba diving involves risks inherent to the marine environment and the weather as well your own underwater activity.

Here are a few tips to ensure you have a great and safe time scuba diving!

safety tips health subea

ONLY DIVE WHEN IN GOOD HEALTH

A very basic rule that can't be stressed enough!

Both for your safety and your well-being, don’t go diving if you’re in pain, have a cold, are ill, tired or if you're taking medicine. Be careful and don't take any chances when it comes to diving. It could lead to an accident.

Likewise, make sure to see your doctor once a year and your dentist as well to monitor any dental problems.

AVOIDING DECOMPRESSION ACCIDENTS

When you go diving, nitrogen enters your body and sometimes has trouble leaving it when you ascend or reach the surface.

The best thing is to ascend at a controlled speed following your instructor, while focusing on your breathing. Before and after diving, eat and make sure that you're hydrated, and protect yourself from the cold.

Tiredness, back pain, inability to urinate or any other sensory/functional disorder should put you on your guard.

PREVENTING SHORTNESS OF BREATH

Shortness of breath occurs when your breathing frequency accelerates until it becomes panting.
safety tips diving breathlessness subea

Priority : calm down and focus on your breathing. Do this whatever the cause of your breathlessness! This may be caused by an overly-intensive physical effort, significant stress due to poor visibility, an incorrectly adjusted regulator, a suit that’s too tight or even hypothermia. In order to prevent this, opt for an ample ventilation volume (0.8 to 1 l), control your movements and just breathe!

 

AVOIDING THE DREADED AIR SHORTAGE

This is feared by divers, even though it’s rarely experienced !

Avoid this fright by checking the pressure of your tank in the centre, on the boat, then regularly while under water. Keep your octopus tucked in and tell your guide when you’re at half-pressure so he can start the process, if necessary, of returning to the boat. Lastly, always stay close to your partner : you can then buddy-breathe in case you've made a mistake or your equipment is faulty.

GETTING ROUND BAROTRAUMA EFFECTS

Barotrauma is caused by changes of the volume of air in your body, under the effects of pressure.
safety tips diving barotrauma subea

You can avoid its effects :

- when descending : by blowing into your mask, which should never be too tight so as to avoid mask squeeze, before frequently equalising your ears without waiting for them to hurt. Limit the speed of descent as well and don’t push things too much! Problem still not solved? Go back up a bit to relieve the pressure and equalize again. Blow your nose if necessary to clear your sinuses.

- when ascending : there's normally nothing to do! The air naturally clears from the ears or sinuses, as well as from the mask. You'll naturally prevent pulmonary overpressure by never holding your breath and by ascending at a controlled speed, while breathing properly.

2

KEEPING GEAR-RELATED RISKS UNDER CONTROL

Take care of your equipment and maintain it regularly to dive with peace of mind!

Your diving equipment enables you to survive underwater, so read the instructions carefully and take care of it properly!

safety tips diving maintenance subea buoyancy compensator

THE BUOYANCY COMPENSATOR

You've taken the time to choose the right Subea BCD, and it will pay dividends under water! But be sure not to damage it, in which case any stabilisation could prove impossible, especially if your BCD fills with water. If the direct-system (DS) is defective (doesn’t inflate, takes time to inflate or constantly inflates) you won’t be able to control your buoyancy or ascend at a controlled speed!

Before diving, inspect it visually. Check its watertightness at the same time as you test the DS inflator : inflate it fully until the purges are automatically triggered. Wait a few seconds and check for leaks. Also test the efficiency of the quick dump valves and that of the DS.

While diving, keep off the seabed and rocks : you’ll protect both your buoyancy BCD and the environment.

THE REGULATOR

Under water, the regulator is also your friend… unless it's not in good condition! Too loose, too tight or leaking, it can cause shortness of breath, air shortage or even panic. It has to provide you with air on demand and without force, otherwise your air consumption will skyrocket and shortness of breath is around the corner.Try not to be an air hog! It can run out faster than you think!

You're now ready to go diving, but is it the same for going snorkeling? Check our tips on safety rules for snorkeling!

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          ARTICLE WRITTEN BY

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          Baptiste, Subea Digital Manager

          I'm 36 years old. I'm the Digital Manager for the Subea brand. I'm keen on spearfishing and freediving and have been scuba diving for over fifteen years. I have my level 1 FFESSM and PADI certifications up to “Rescue” level.

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