|a needed Safety Stop?|
Posted by Ross-O on December 28, 2006 at 16:26:15:|
In Reply to: ABSOLUTELY IF NEEDED posted by Walt on December 28, 2006 at 11:31:07:
Ken made some really good points. Walt confused me with the needed safety stop part...
I think the most important thing is to have a very clear agreement with your buddy prior to the dive about separation protocols, do your absolute best not to get separated, and then follow your plan should it happen.
When I'm being serious about buddy diving, we usually agree to a 1-2 minute search after realizing that we're separated. If we don't find each other, then we proceed directly to the surface at our usual ascent rate, reconnect, and figure out if we can continue the dive or not.
If the buddy is not at the surface with a few mins of me getting there, that means that they're either dead, entrapped and working on becoming dead, or found some reason important enough to break our agreement. I can't remember this happening to me on a real buddy dive (ie, neglecting "same ocean" buddy agreements), but if it did, I would go back down for as long as my NDL or air allowed and try to find them to recover the body, disentangle them, or kick their butt for ditching me.
We make a HUGE point to not become separated from each other or from our anchor line on our tech dives or deeper recreational offshore dives. It would suck really really bad to do drifting deco while figuring out what you're going to say to your possibly dead buddy's family and wondering how far you'll surface from the boat, that in my case, is often unattended.
I'm no instructor, but in my experiences, there's nothing worse than worrying about what happened to a lost buddy when we didn't take the time before the dive to clearly discuss how we would handle separation. It's just pure misery for me. I also hate sitting on my boat and worrying about a solo diver who is overdue. On the other hand, I have almost no worries when we're all diving in buddy teams. That alone is enough to drive me towards strict buddy diving.
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