Welcome to ScubaBoard, an online scuba diving forum community where you can join over 205,000 divers diving from around the world. If the topic is related to scuba diving, this is the place to find divers talking about it. To gain full access to ScubaBoard (and make this large box go away) you must register for a free account. As a registered member you will be able to:
Participate in over 500 dive topic forums and browse from over 5,500,000 posts.
Communicate privately with other divers from around the world.
Post your own photos or view from well over 100,000 user submitted images.
Gain access to our free classifieds marketplace to buy, sell and trade gear, travel and services.
Use the calendar to organize your events and enroll in other members' events.
Find a dive buddy or communicate directly with scuba equipment manufacturers.
All this and much more is available to you absolutely free when you register for an account, so sign up today!
If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact the ScubaBoard Support Team.
View Poll Results: Should the RTSC require buoyancy control to obtain an OW card?
10. You may not vote on this poll
Yes! You're not an OW diver if you can't handle this.
I'm splitting this off from the other thread I started because I think it truly needs its own thread - and poll.
So here we go.
How about we petition the RTSC to add the following to ALL agency standards for a BOW (Basic OW) card.
The student must demonstrate reasonable mastery of buoyancy. As a minimum requirement to demonstrate this skill, the student must, on at least two open water dives, demonstrate:
Beginning off the bottom surface, and while neutrally buoyant, the student must make a free, no-assist-line ascent. For a checkout dive with a planned depth of less than 30', the ascent may be directly to the surface. For a checkout dive with a planned depth of greater than or equal to 30' but less than the checkout limit of 60', the ascent must include a mandatory 3 minute safety stop at 15'. At least one of the two free ascents must include the stop, and if different depth checkout dives are used at least one ascent must be done on the more shallow dive site and one at the deeper.
The student is considered to have "passed" this skill IF and only IF:
1. The student begins neutrally buoyant, in the determination of the instructor.
2. The safe ascent rate is NOT violated at any time during the exercise. A violation of the 30fpm ascent rate constitutes failure of this skill.
3. The safety stop depth is held within a 5' tolerance (that is, from 10-20') for the requisite 3 minutes without recourse to an upline, anchor line, or contact with another diver. Timing the safety stop and monitoring its depth is the responsibility of the student.
This skill may be performed with more than one student at a time, but if it is, a sufficient student to instructor or assistant ratio must be maintained so that the instructor or assistant can arrest any unsafe ascent that develops and maintain supervision of the class as is otherwise required.
This is a "mandatory" skill and while the agency or instructor may demand mastery in excess of that specified here, an OW card may not issue if the minimum requirement is not met.
Vote early and often; comments welcome!!
If there is consensus, I'll actually put up a FAX petition (you sign by email, and my petition software will fax the signatures!) to the agencies and the RTSC....
Interesting. Of course, the RSTC recommends and does not mandate. Each agency sets it's own standards in it's own words. Even when various agencies have the same standard, they are never worded identically.
Actually until you get your bouyancy down diving isnt fun IMO..its just too much work.
Fact be known, and more than one instructor has pointed this out to me, Newbees are overweighted and use there BCD's to get thru OW. Its less hassle on the instructor. Otherwise its like trying
to catch a bunch of run away helium ballons.
are basically commands, as without minimums met in the same fashion one agency would not honor the referrals from another.
That is where the "teeth" would be in having the RTSC get involved, and it would also avoid back-pressure from one player adopting this (which could lead them not to want referrals from agencies that don't hold this to be important, for example.)
Gotta agree... the poll is a tad misdirected. The RTSC only recommends and, ofcourse, the signed on agencies presumably follow that recommendation. Add another option... should the agencies be petitioned to make buoyancy control part of their minimum standard and I'll check that one off ~smile~
SSI already requires buouiyancy control in both pool and open water. However, there is no clear statement of what constitutes acceptable buoyancy control which is left to the best judgement of the instructor.
The issue that I witnessed with my g/f was with an SSI shop. Clearly, the instructor signed off. Clearly, there is no way the skill was present.
Clearly, something is wrong.
If the RTSC was to issue a definition of the skill, would this be a bad thing?
Don't think inside the box - think about what it could be. A petition to the RTSC, signed by a whole lot (thousands?) of divers, might get their attention. It might also get the attention of some of the agencies apart from the RTSC.
First... it is part of the SSI standard. I would recommend you go ask why it wasn't taught or evaluated properly. It's right there in black and white starting in pool 3 and open water 2. It should have been done and the fact that it wasn't is something that should be made an issue of imho.
That said, the question I have is if there are even enough divers who know what buoyancy control is to be able to get enough signatures to make anyone's eyebrow go up. That's a pretty pessimistic view, but there it is.
The only drawback to the RTSC I can see is that it's kind like going to the Fed to whine about some state policy complaint. The agencies are the ones that define the applicable policies, and they're the ones who work for a profit and stand to lose if the customer base gets too restless.
The end goal is to get the agencies to sign on to meaningful buoyancy control policy. So why start with a third party? Why not go straight to the source of the problem and deposit the "stink" in their back yard?