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Buddy OOA with 1,000 PSI

Discussion in 'Near Misses and Lessons Learned' started by Esprise Me, May 5, 2019.

  1. Esprise Me

    Esprise Me Kelp forest dweller ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Los Angeles, CA
    426
    410
    63
    I went out on a local dive boat today and got paired with an instabuddy with a similar dive count but who had only dived in Thailand. On our second dive, just after we started our ascent from 60 feet, she signaled "out of air" and grabbed my octo. She struggled with it for a second, long enough for me to take out my primary with the intention of handing it to her but not long enough to hand it over before she got it squared away. I didn't notice any signs of panic; she signaled clearly and, while she ascended a little fast for my taste (my Leonardo beeped at me a few times, but not the whole way up), we made it to the surface fine and she was able to inflate her BCD from her cylinder once we were there. I asked her about it; she said she suddenly felt like she wasn't getting any air, but she didn't look at her gauge at the time; on the surface, she checked and it said she still had 1,000 psi left. (I surfaced with 600; I'd had about 1200 when we started our ascent. We skipped the safety stop.)

    She did a third dive (I thought we should sit it out, but we agreed instead to stay shallow; we stayed above 25 feet and within touch distance of each other) and had no issues. What could have caused this? And should I have insisted we skip that last dive until we figured it out? If I'd been the one with the problem, I definitely would have called it a day, but I feel like it's a little murkier telling someone else what to do, especially since she handled it well and I wasn't afraid for my own safety.
     
    Sam Miller III likes this.
  2. Streydog

    Streydog Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: DFW, TX
    793
    485
    63
    I saw this video on YouTube the other day of a similar situation. The diver blamed it on his rental gear. I don't know but is it possible her tank wasn't open all the way? Seems to me it would have been more evident early on in the dive though.

     
    Esprise Me likes this.
  3. CuzzA

    CuzzA Solo Diver

    11,182
    13,550
    113
    Tank valve was probably not fully open.

    Just my opinion, but I think sometimes it's good to get back in the water after an incident, assuming it's not equipment related. Getting back in builds confidence.
     
    John C. Ratliff and Esprise Me like this.
  4. Diver below 83

    Diver below 83 Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: SoFlo
    815
    341
    63
    Always nice to have videos afterwards.
     
  5. Fishyhead

    Fishyhead Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: California
    60
    19
    8
    Did you check to see if her tank valve was fully open?
     
  6. Esprise Me

    Esprise Me Kelp forest dweller ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Los Angeles, CA
    426
    410
    63
    I didn't; that's a good idea. She had all rental gear, FWIW. I do recall seeing her set up her gear the first time and turning the valve back a quarter turn, which I was also taught to do but don't anymore. I didn't see her take 3 deep breaths while watching her gauge, as I've also learned to do. A boat captain in Mexico once turned off my air, but I caught it before splashing with that trick.
     
  7. Fishyhead

    Fishyhead Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: California
    60
    19
    8
    Part of my buddy check routine is to check their air and ask that they check mine. I've made the mistake of splashing with my air not fully open and caught buddies with air fully closed.

    I give my valves a quarter turn.
     
  8. Diver below 83

    Diver below 83 Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: SoFlo
    815
    341
    63
    Modern valves do not need to be turned back. Open fully and call it a day.
     
    noj3333 likes this.
  9. Esprise Me

    Esprise Me Kelp forest dweller ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Los Angeles, CA
    426
    410
    63
    When you say you check each other's air, do you mean turning the valves? I've always done the visual confirmation that my buddy took a breath off their reg and vice versa. My OW instructor was not super clear on the fine points of buddy checks; we learned the acronym but didn't really drill down on what each check point meant.
     
  10. Fishyhead

    Fishyhead Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: California
    60
    19
    8
    Yes, I put my hand on their valve and make sure it's either fully open or opens only a quarter turn or so. Of course we discuss it beforehand so if the instabuddy isn't cool with me touching their valve, I don't.
     

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