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I carry a whistle and SMB/reel
I own a knife but I do not usually have it underwater with me
The "Thing that whistles incorporated into BCD inflator mechanism" I usually use for remote sites with high waves and possibility to get drifted away from the boat.
The most important item though is using the grey matter between your ears to keep yourself out of trouble. Unfortunately, many divers forget that also. I think (can't prove) that the simple act of carrying the safety gear and maybe practicing with it a bit changes your mindset and actually helps keep you out of trouble since you realize there are potential dangers out there and you are taking responsibility rather than relying on someone else for your safety.
“Our virtues and our failings are inseparable, like force and matter. When they separate, man is no more.” - Nikola Tesla
It all depends on the dive. However, it seems like we are talking OW here. I carry a big ole SMB on a finger spool, small knife and Trilobyte EzyCut (or however you spell it), a set of shears, and if at night a glow stick for the SMB if needed.
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Originally Posted by Dbmata
I don't know whether to worship you, or hunt you to display you over my fireplace.
I see nothing wrong with what you carry, and I think carrying them is a good habit to develop. With time you may find that in some situations you don't need all of them, but hey, better to have them and not need them than not have them when you do need them!
On every dive I carry a SMB/spool, knife, and a Fox 40 whistle. If I'm diving singles and it's a wreck rather than a reef dive, I'll bring a 400' reel and sling a 20cu pony. Doubles rig for extended penetration involves more redundant equipment, but no different pieces of safety gear.
I carry a mirror, whistle, and dye pack that will form a ring around me so I can be seen in a large expanse of open water. I have had it for so long- I don't remember what it is called. I also carry a sausage. I have never needed a knife but have one and would carry it if someone told me the dive site has a lot of fishing line on it. If I had a Nautilus, I would certainly carry it and there is nothing wrong with being ready for a problem- your life depends on it. My most important safety "plan" is my buddy- I would never dive without one.