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Dive Dangers; The Differentiation between "SOLO" and "BUDDY"

Discussion in 'Solo Divers' started by ermaclob, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. ermaclob

    ermaclob Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Miami Dade County, Florida
    Every time i come into the solo section of the forums i always see these epic arguments of what is safe and whats not, y you shouldn't dive alone or should etc.

    One of the things that bothers me as a person trying to get a greater understanding of the activity is that people tend to never specify what are the actual dangers involved in solo diving. The way that is see it, is that the dangers of diving are always constant and can be caused by ocean conditions, equipment, wildlife, dive location/ depth, as well as poor planing and negligence. Generally i would say that most issues fall inside of those categories.

    **id like to ask what are some of the possible life threatening problems that a solo diver may face? specifically that is

    As i read through some of the threads individuals stress that proper training is needed to solo dive to prepare for unexpected problems, and with out it you should always stick with a buddy. However recalling back to my OW course i cant really see how just diving with another person would make diving any safer, the training in that class concerning buddy's is very very basic, so basic that I wouldn't really consider its that life saving. The only 2 things that a buddy can do is give you air in the even that you ether run out of air or both you 2nd stages fail on you. As well as providing support (the only real benefit IMO). this is assuming he is a good buddy and keeps an eye out for problems. (not much use if his 15 - 20 feet away starring at a fish when your drowning). i would say that most people that dont dive often do this at one point or another.

    now when i think Solo diver i think of a diver who has taken the initiative to expand his or hers understanding of possible hazards and prepare (weather through instruction or self teaching) specifically for the propose of diving alone. i would say that any diver that did prepare for hazards they would generally be safer with or without a buddy, and could engage solo diving as an added activity.

    **the main point in this post is that the dangers of diving are always constant regardless whether you dive with someone or not there there , so Y would it matter if your with a buddy or not? wouldn't the smarter thing to do be to just be ready for things to happen and be able to solve them your self?
    KWS and w ripley like this.
  2. waterpirate

    waterpirate Solo Diver

    # of Dives:
    Location: Delmarva peninsula
    If your dive count is accurate, so is your statement. Most here became great buddy's prior to being solo. Others went solo right out of the gate in the 70's-80's.

    When you think of the dangers involved in diving with a buddy, think about how you would or could solve that same problem solo. Personaly I am most afraid of underwater spiders. Thanx si-fi channel.......

    Jax likes this.
  3. knowone

    knowone Regular of the Pub

    Do you know any of the girls from CSI Miami
    aquaregia and davetowz like this.
  4. DevonDiver

    DevonDiver N/A

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Subic Bay, Philippines
    Solo diving has the same hazards as buddy diving. No more, no less. You just don't have the 'insurance policy' of a buddy being present; which means you need to have the capability to handle every eventuality without any support. Most importantly, you need to have developed the stress/panic management which enables any proper response and self-rescue, when otherwise under extreme stress.

    One of the main benefits of having a buddy is that they won't be under the same direct stress that you are under, should you suffer a major problem. Thus, they are better psychologically enabled to intervene and assist. It's easy to hypothesise that you can deal with emergencies based on your performance in a supported buddy environment, but -in reality- you need a lot of experience to guarantee your performance in an emergency when you are alone.
  5. sylpha

    sylpha Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: England
    I thiny you have assesed it right, except that you have missed out that sixth sense you develop with experience. if you are diving on a regular basis (with or without a buddy) you notice things sub-conciously, just like you do when driving, you also get to know the terrain and the scenarios (oh the current's changed direction time to head back to the shot). Experience makes you a better buddy and a safer diver, it's something which can't be taught.

    Yes the dangers are the same, but conceit and complacency are the two greatest dangers and we take those down there with us. I'm more frightened by a 'know it all' diver who has done both dives than any shark, and the time i don't feel a little aprehension before getting in the water is the day i give up diving.

    I like you assesment, you feel the limitations of your OW course, that's because it's designed for holiday divers who will be following an instructor around the whole time. I understand that later courses add to that knowledge. I learned the BSAC way which is to teach rescue skills from the beginning of the programme, it's designed around people taking up diving as a hobby & diving with just one buddy more often than an annual holiday.

    There's a grerat deal of dioscussion about solo courses at present, although i dive solo most of the time & have done for a good few years i'm considering doing a course simply for insurance purposes and so that i don't have to follow the crowd on holiday. I'm pretty sure that they will talk about things i do already and half of what they teach me will be useless on hiliday because the equipment won't be available at the kinds of places i go on holiday, but hey i could learn something really useful which i hadn't considered.
    KevinG58 and KWS like this.
  6. knowone

    knowone Regular of the Pub

    apprehensive:goingdown: diving dude
  7. MauiScubaSteve

    MauiScubaSteve Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Olowalu, Maui
    Sounds like you are making stuff up in order to start epic arguments; the "Tech" solo-ish members of this opt-in "harp" so loud that you will die without redundancy that most of the solo divers that this forum claimed it was created for no longer post here. I make my solo posts in the Hawaii 'Ohana, and the recreational buddy divers there rarely "harp."

    KWS and knowone like this.
  8. KWS

    KWS ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: SE TEXAS
    The OP has a very good point. BOW is taught at a super basic level. Kindergarden Level. All 5yos must hold hands when crossing the street. It is a great premis for the beginner situation but all get hit by trafic when the first in line does not look fboth ways. Everyone knows that the practice does not save lives but just minimizes the chance of loosing one. On countless times, i have taken flack for using the phrase "diving solo with others." I believe that diving solo is diving with a nonbuddy dependant skill set. It is diving with a higher level of awareness. It is not for everyone. The buddy system is only as good as the weakest link/buddy. Though i do not suscribe to the notion that there is no difference in a swimming pool and being a mile into a cave at 100 ft, i do agree that thre are many advanced skill sets that behove any diver. One must taylor the dive to the skills and visa versa. I set limits for myself when divng physically solo that are more limiting than when diving with a buddy. For instance no drift, no exploration, no penatration, no deep, no low vis, ect. Things like entanglement is handled much better with a buddy and if pinned a buddy can be the link to the surface. OOA You need a buddy. Solo you need a second source of air. I dont think there is much that can go really bad with a solo dive if properly equiped, trained, planned, and exicuted with realistic caution. Realistic caution is where i think most buddy teams fail at. Of course there is no replaement for a buddy when you get run over by a boat while surfacing. There are situations where a buddy is useless..., in which the buddy is a non factor, others when it is nice to have... in which you equip to replace the buddy function, and those few instances where a buddy is indespensable,,, and you avoid those diving situations. Your statement the the dangers are constant is true. Only the alternatives for resolving the problems change.
  9. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: On the Fun Side of Trump's Wall
    That is not a universally true statement ... it depends on the instructor, the student, and what the agency will allow.

    We should not, however, under any circumstances be teaching the principles of solo diving at the BOW level ... for reasons which shouldn't even require elaboration.

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    Jim Lapenta likes this.
  10. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: On the Fun Side of Trump's Wall
    I must have missed all those epic arguments ... I don't recall seeing them occurring in this forum. Pretty much everyone who comes here is a solo diver, and the "argument" about whether to dive alone or not has already been resolved in their mind before they came here.

    I would say you missed the two most important categories ... ignorance and hubris. The dangers of diving may always be constant, but the degree of mitigation to those risks is what gets you in trouble ... and those vary tremendously from diver to diver. Risks are usually manageable if you have a clue what you're getting yourself into and you're prepared to deal with it. By far the most significant danger of diving is finding yourself faced with a problem you don't know how to manage ... the body's natural reaction to such a situation is panic, and that's the worst potential danger most divers are ever likely to be faced with. Sadly, it's a self-inflicted one ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    KWS likes this.

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