[Coral-List] SCUBA diving

Brad h2o at defnet.com
Fri Oct 31 01:28:11 EST 2003

Hello Dean,        

I looked at your letter closely to understand what information you are looking for, and though you seem to be looking for "papers", I thought this might be a good time to share an opinion of mine about the diving agencies, and divers in general. I feel that the agencies are far from adequate in terms of teaching bouancy. As a result, certified divers go off to the reefs in droves, and cause a lot of damage to the coral. Good bouancy control needs to be mastered before being certified. This is not what we have now. Divers are certified after being introduced to the basic concept, but not mastering it. 

Also, instructors need to stress the rules about touching coral, how delicate it is, and dangling consoles, etc. Some instructors do a good job, but many do not! I am frequently appalled at what I see when I go diving. And worst of all may be "Experience SCUBA". Many times, I have seen people who can't even swim, tearing up the reef. I feel strongly that these "Experience SCUBA" sessions should be banned from everywhere but pools. As divers, we need to speak out about these things, and not allow profit to rule our actions. I hope my thoughts are useful in your quest, and that you are able to apply my thoughts where they may do some good.

Brad Stambaugh 

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