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Night dives = AOW?

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by racerx_, Sep 29, 2013.

  1. giffenk

    giffenk Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: toronto
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    No where I have been in the Caribbean had any night diving requirement other than the willingness to rent a light.

    A standard procedure for live aboards is to perform the night dive on a site that had already been dove during daylight.
     
  2. Quero

    Quero Will be missed Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

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    alpegmusic, thanks for the reply, but the experience I described was my own, not socaljohn's. I did only five specifically designated dives for a NAUI AOW: deep (42 m.), nav (swim a straight line w/natural nav and a triangle with a compass), search (find a weightbelt right under the boat), night (good instruction/dive), wreck (7-meter long boat full of lobsters at 10 meters depth on a shore dive). While at the time I wasn't aware of it, now I realize that my instructor did less than the minimum, or maybe he justified cutting corners in the way you describe, by counting a dive off a boat as "boat dive" even though there was nothing different about it than any of my many other boat dives (no discussion even). He also violated standards of depth on the deep dive. And my "search" consisted of jumping into the water and looking around for a bright blue weightbelt tossed into clear, shallow water during a surface interval. Took two minutes--it's a stretch to even call it a dive. I just think I got a low-quality instructor.

    My experience simply demonstrates the adage: It's the instructor, not the agency.
     
  3. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many. Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

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    I may be overreading this, but I detect a tone of dismissal of the value of a night diving class (implying, of course, that night diving is something one can learn for oneself).

    I think, like virtually all other classes, it depends on how it is taught. Some people are very confident in the water, and others are more timid. Some people will be able to get a lot of diving done in daylight before they have to tackle a night dive -- Puget Sound, on the other hand, will force anyone who wants to dive after work to dive at night, starting about a month ago. And, as with so much other diving, there is just doing it, and there is taking into consideration all the potential issues involved. I know my friend NWGratefulDiver does skills like backup light deployment and buddy separation/search in his night diving teaching. I know from personal experience that direct ascents at night are much more challenging, and SMB deployment might be a very useful skill to teach a diver who is planning on doing dives at night -- we don't ALWAYS find the anchor line, if in fact there is one to be found.

    I deplore the relentless fragmentation of diving into an unending succession of low-value classes . . . but I don't think that devalues education per se. Having an instructor show you what you really ought to think about, and having someone there to make sure you don't get hopelessly lost or disoriented, can be of great value in one's first night dives, I think.
     
  4. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

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    In your case the instructor failed to follow agency standards ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
     
  5. giffenk

    giffenk Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
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    TSandM made a good point about considering the value of a night diving class. Having not taken one, I looked up Padi info Night Diver Underwater Navigation & Light System Courses - PADI Scuba Diving Training Organization

    which boils down to
    - night dive planning
    - buoyancy
    - entries, exits, navigation
    - night life
    For a new diver the class should help to develop buoyancy and navigation skills as it provides an opportunity for additional supervision.

    How much night related content is in these type of courses? I would think the key topics would be light related skills.


     
  6. Hawkwood

    Hawkwood MSDT ScubaBoard Supporter

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    I remember assisting a Night class a couple of years ago. We did not finish dive 2 until well after 1:00 a.m. Heck, it does not get dark in the summer here until well past 10:30 p.m. at times.
     
  7. racerx_

    racerx_ Barracuda

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    I hope it's clear I'm not saying AOW is required to night dive everywhere just at the ops I've been with here in south east Asia (and a few in the u.s.) it seems to have been. That was regardless of training agency, etc.

    My point was more that although AOW gives you a few more dives under an instructor it may not give you much more training that directly relates to being confident on a night dive (depending on the diver.. And who trained him) so it seemed weird to ask for such a qualification. I don't remember much in-depth training in my AOW related to night diving. More just an extended briefing about signaling with a torch etc. of course, nwgratefuldiver's approach seems good.

    At the same time these dive ops would PROBABLY let me dive if I showed I had night diving experience without AOW , but then you only get night diving experience by diving at night so if it's experience they're after why not allow people to get that through a night dive. I suppose they're trying to escape liability although in case of a mishap I would think they would still be liable, not the agency or instructor that trained the person.

    I have a friend who did a night dive, dove to 25+meters, and did a wreck dive during his open water course!
     
  8. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

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    It seems consensus is whether you are allowed to do a night dive with a dive op depends on the op's requirements. No norm or set rules. Except where it's illegal, I would guess the op makes the rule based on what they feel is best for them--responsibility and insurance wise. I'm a DM with the Night Cert. as well, and one who has never had ANY problems night diving, so I would guess I wouldn't be questioned. Other than night course itself, my night dive total is 2. But they'll never question ME.......Well, one was in Nova Scotia and the other in Panama, so that IS a variety of places....
     
  9. JohnoAU

    JohnoAU Solo Diver

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    I think the Night dive requiring AOW, like all the other dive situations where n Dive Op requires AOW, while not necessarily directly correlating with the training received, it's a line in the sand they can choose to use as a guide for the divers level of training, ability, in water comfort etc. If all divers were trained as intended to a actual minimum standard, I'd suggest that AOW would work as intended (but that's an entirely different argument).
     
  10. XS-NRG

    XS-NRG Barracuda

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    I wasn't required to do a night dive for my AOW in Australia because the marine park they dive in was full of Nurse Sharks which are nocturnal animals and night diving would disrupt their feeding patterns. It simply was not allowed even though I really wanted to do it. I did Deep and Nav then 3 other electives specific to the area (I think they were drift, buoyancy and multi-level which aren't very thrilling specialties but are important in their own right). Just 2 weeks ago now I actually took the night diver specialty which wrapped up my master diver card at the same time so anytime in the future that night diving comes up I'll be covered in more than one way.
     

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