If the water is contaminated or very cold, having divers remove their full-face mask to switch to pony defeats the purpose of wearing a full-face mask. The RSV-1 developed by Butch Hendrick and Carl Saieba allows the diver to switch to a pony with two quick motions with one finger. The quick disconnect also allows other air sources to be connected in. Kiss the water hello to acclimate your face to the temperature and wetness and to strengthen reflexive mouth breathing skills. Remove mask, put a regulator in your mouth, and breath for at least 15 seconds. Concentrate on gentle 3 second exhalations and normal inhalation.
A tender checks his diver's air just prior to descent. The backup tender will count and record the primary diver's respiration rate for a full minute every 5 minutes. The backup tender should know within approximately 200 psi how much air the diver has at any point with these 5 minute checks. There is therefore NO need for the diver to surface for an air check.
Duct tape works well for distance marking tether and anchor lines. It will last hundreds of dives. We use a narrow width for every 5 feet. A narrow followed by wide for 25 feet, 2 narrow and a wide for 50 feet, 3 narrow and a wide for 75 feet, 2 wide for 100 feet, 2 wide followed by a narrow for 150 feet, and so on. It has proven to work well for over 70 years. Bandannas are not just a fashion statement. After a swim test use colored bandannas to designate swim capabilities: e.g. Green: go - a good choice for a "go-rescue". Red: Operations level personnel. If you can see a red bandanna person in the water it was either an accident or that person may need help. Blue is the best choice for rescue swimming.
Do you have: A primary diver and tender (left); a fully dressed backup diver and a backup tender who also serves as pattern profiler and record keeper (middle); a 90% ready diver (right) who should be your strongest diver.
The whitewater dive live-aboard. Want to dive here? Everybody's foaming.
If worn properly pony bottles are less of an entanglement risk than is the main tank set-up. And if you think for a moment that you could be entangled, how could you enter the water without a true redundant air source that can be quickly released from your main gear. Notice that the pony bottle sits snugly up against the tank and BCD (LGS PSD BCD with pony pocket). Also note that the pony regulator hose lays downward and does not stick out. If a pressure gauge is desired for the pony, use a port plug style so no extra hoses will be necessary. Use a bright colored hose wrap on the pony hose so:
1 - Tenders can quickly see that the divers have the correct regulator in their mouths before descending.
2 - Divers can physically feel the difference between the pony hose and all other hoses - even with thick gloves on. Wear the pony hose under your arm. Hook the pony regulator mouthpiece to a neck ring or strap.
Tender safety should be equally considered. Sometimes tenders should be tethered to prevent falling in the water from standing on very slimy mud or rocks. PFDs are always a must. Gloves should be worn whenever handling line.
Butch shows much surprise at how over weighted the diver's belt is. It doesn't surprise us anymore. We just fix it. Weight belt ditching drills provide students with a life-saving self-rescue technique. We put the divers in a circle where they learn how and when to drop belt reflexively. They ditch the belt at least 25 times in this one session, and of course once at the end of every dive before any other piece of equipment is removed. The dangers of over weighting and poorly set up belts are covered. Ugly weight belts win the award with us. "You have the right to be free of that belt." Pick the free end up with your right hand to don and ditch it. Make sure it is free of obstructions such as the BC cummerbund. Right hand release so your left hand can be on your power inflator. You have the right to ditch it!! Better lead than dead!!
Heat loss should be considered and prevented as much as possible. Even in the summer wind and a wet wet suit can result in enough evaporative heat loss to cause cold stress.
Roll-up straps are excellent tools to bring a person out of the water horizontally. This keeps the blood in their core and helps to prevent patient banging, yanking, twisting, and dropping. Take 2 15-foot weight belt sections and add grommets to one end of each. Snap carabiners into the grommets.
1- Patient's head to the bow to prevent accidental head-into-motor-distance-misjudgement.
2- Straps need to be flat not twisted. Each needs to sit squarely on top of itself as it comes around the body and back to the boat.
3- Upper strap lays midway between the shoulder and elbow. Lower strap lays midway between the knee and hip.
4- The rescuer at the head controls the speed of both of the rescuers pulling so the victim comes up horizontally.
5- The head rescuer secures the patient's head once it reaches the boat.
In the photo to the side, these NJ firefighters built an excellent roll-up net system with webbing and a PVC pipe. Roll-up straps can also be used to re-flip an overturned boat. One rescuer can flip a boat so that rescuers and victims holding on underneath will end up back in the boat as the boat flips.
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|Created by Dolphin Diving - copyright 990901|