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Thread: Leading certified divers

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    Banned CGOUGHN is an unknown quantity at this point CGOUGHN's Avatar
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    Leading certified divers

    Hey RBW,

    Just wondering how people feel about someone leading a group of certified OC divers while using CCR. I haven't seen anything about this from a couple of training agencies, and have yet to get an e-mail back from a couple of them.

    Mostly curious is all. I personally wouldn't have a problem with this at all. I figure that unless the CCR diver has to bail out, that's more gas for other emergencies. Who knows, I could be way off base, but, I'm curious to hear from other CCR divers about opinions on the matter. This isn't meant to be an argument about whether or now CCR and OC can mesh, but rather, whether it's OK for a CCR diver to lead certified divers using OC (mostly recreational level dives).

    Cheers - Chris

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    RBW Member GrimSleeper is an unknown quantity at this point GrimSleeper's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    I've done it - if your role is solely to guide (ie get the group to the best bits of the site, point out the interesting stuff), then I don't think the breathing system used by the guide matters. On the other hand, if there is any doubt as to whether the guide is responsible for the safety of other divers beyond a general duty to respond to emergencies (guiding very inexperienced divers, say, and taking on an explicit DM role), there might be an argument that not using a breathing system the divers were familiar with could add to the confusion in an emergency, or that using CCR might hinder dealing with a bolter... That said, might the same apply if the DM used a bp/w & long hose, or sidemount? You have to make your own decisions as to the effect your equipment choices might have on emergency responses, and it's going to differ from dive group to dive group.

    From my own experience, the biggest issue in diving CCR as a dive guide was the need for a lengthy briefing on what I needed other divers to look out for in my behaviour - CCR problems tend to present in ways OC divers don't expect.




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    Re: Leading certified divers

    One of my near death experiences on CCR was a "just guiding certified divers" dive.

    Because it's so rare that you're just pointing out the good stuff. Typically, in this case it was two very raw OW divers. One couldn't leave the surface - not underweighted, just couldn't let the air out of his lungs. Then the other had a leaky mask.

    So much distraction. So glad I had started with a loop full of O2. Because of the extra O2 we'd gotten to the bottom, got them settled and just started to swim off around the sight when my vision started tunneling out. Turned out I'd battery bounced as I rolled off the boat and my Classic had restarted AND I'd knocked the button on the Shearwater HUD in the same manoeuvre and not noticed because of all the distraction.

    Hammered my O2 MAV, got the Shearwater fired up again so I knew what was going on in the loop - 8 flashes after a big old splash of O2 doesn't inspire happiness - then went through the boot process on the Classic handsets and was fine after that.

    But to the point. Because I was so focussed on getting this couple to the point where I could actually guide them around the site, I completely forgot about my unit for a few minutes. Just happened to coincide with a double failure of electronics (well, a double power off by accident) and it could have ended very, very differently had it not been for that warning via visual disturbance moments before unconsciousness.

    So I'd say: it depends. If you have a competent group of divers who have their shit wired, so it really is just a pootle round a well known site? Yeah. If you have to babysit a bunch of numpties? No freakin way.

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    RBW Member broncobowsher is on a distinguished road broncobowsher is on a distinguished road broncobowsher's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    OW divers so green the ink on the cards isn't dry yet, no. Throw a tank on your back so they can get comfortable without a bunch of new stuff.


    Seasoned divers, yes, give them something to consider upgrading to. Open there eyes a little further.

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    Custom Title Allowed! Robert Cook is on a distinguished road Robert Cook is on a distinguished road Robert Cook's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    It would depend on the group. If they are CCR-certified or used to being around CCRs then fine. If they are complete beginners then no.

    There's a large grey area in the middle, however. The main issue is that they aren't going to know your gear properly, so if they need to rescue you then it's less likely to succeed.

    I'd also say that it would be worth asking this question in a non-rebreather forum as well,

    Thanks,
    Robert

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    RBW Member moose_grunt is an unknown quantity at this point moose_grunt's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Starfish  View Original Post
    If you have to babysit a bunch of numpties? No freakin way.
    Second that opinion. Especially if you may have to lend a hand to someone who gets a bit floaty.

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    RBW Member JohnnyC is an unknown quantity at this point JohnnyC's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    I think looking at it from the other side of the equation, would I care if my guide were on CCR while I was OC? In my case, nah, because I know what to look for, I've got my fecal material sorted and collated, and can deal with my own problems, or the guides problems if necessary. However, if I were a new diver, it would scare the pants off me if a guide tried to tell me how to recognize an issue and react accordingly. It would be an even greater stressor on someone who really shouldn't be given any adversity so early in their diving career.

    So sure, if the divers are ok with it and are reasonably suited to self-rescue as well as recognize issues and rescue the guide of necessary. If they're not those sort of divers, slap on a tank and blow some bubbles for a bit. No harm no foul.

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    RBW Member bl6394 is an unknown quantity at this point bl6394's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    As an instructor - my agency gives some direction in the instructor's manual as to when I must not use a rebreather (during discover scuba and open water training for example.)

    Otherwise - they say it "is acceptable if course performance requirements can be met."

    With that said - I would act as an instructor or paid guide - using a rebreather - with considerable caution. If something went wrong and an injury occurred - for the sake of argument something that was not at all rebreather related - I would expect an agency to carefully scrutinize every angle of the incident to see if the rebreather could be argued to have contributed to the incident in some hypothetical way.

    "The guide was using different gear than the divers he was leading, increasing their stress, confused them, ..."

    "The guide was unable to respond quickly enough to the emergency because he was managing his own complicated equipment, buoyancy, etc."

    "The guide's decision to use advanced, technical gear was imprudent given the skill / experience level of his charges..."

    "The guide's attention was distracted monitoring his own PO2, leading to less supervision of the injured diver..."
    I would not expect the agency to give the guide the benefit of the doubt. From the agency's point of view - it becomes a question of - how hard will it be to defend this in court. So, from a risk mitigation perspective - I would only consider using a rebreather around divers whom I was very unlikely to have to assist or rescue.
    Last edited by bl6394; 8th April 2016 at 22:24.

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    RBW Member Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile has a spectacular aura about Skankpile's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    Happened to me, its was just me and an instructor on CCR during the final checkout dives with some OW students... I was just tagging along and wanted to dive.

    Its was in CA and I had a great time with him as we molested a few fish and killed a few critters for fun on the dive. I got along with the guy great and would do it again, guess it just depends on the guide.

    However:
    I've also seen an instructor on CCR giving OW scuba lessons to his Son and he was not slinging bailout...so you recognize bad easily when you see it. If you intentionally cut corners I just cant respect your practice and will not associate with such. I waited for them to surface before I drove off for the day and never said anything as there was no point.

  10. #10
    RBW Member Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1 has a reputation beyond repute Gobfish1's Avatar
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    Re: Leading certified divers

    id say dive oc,

    id not want some padi type using said dives to bunp up his in water times for hes next course / step on the padi ladder ,

    do what your getting payed to do ,

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