Propeller Injuries and Boat Awareness: DAN Revitalises Safety Campaign

By Scott Jamieson, DAN Asia-Pacific

Sadly, within the first four months of 2018 there have been at least three fatalities of divers/snorkellers caused by collision injuries from boat propellers; one each in Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia. It is likely there were additional incidents, as many injuries often go unreported.

These figures are of great concern to DAN and should be of concern to all divers. We felt it was timely to revitalise a safety campaign that focuses on creating awareness of propeller safety.

Propeller injuries are unfortunately far too common in diving accident reports despite often being preventable. Many propeller incidents occur in remote locations where the medical facilities available to treat injuries sustained may be insufficient, and the licencing and regulating of boat drivers may be poorly enforced or does not exist. This is not to say that countries like Australia and New Zealand are immune to such incidents, reporting simply highlights a greater occurrence in other countries of the Asia-Pacific.

What are the main causes of propeller incidents?

Having reviewed reported incidents from the past ten years there seems to be four main categories of causes:

  1. Boat operators unaware of divers in the area coupled with insufficient lookout for the conditions.
  2. Boat operators attempting to move the boat while divers were nearby in the water.
  3. Divers/snorkellers surfacing in the path of boat traffic, failing to use a flag or buoy, or undertaking diving activities in an area frequented by boats.
  4. Divers being pushed into boat propellers by waves or currents.

These indicate the need for a two-pronged approach to increase the safety of divers/snorkellers in relation to propellers:

1. Working with divers/snorkellers to increase their awareness of strategies to avoid propeller incidents, such as:

  • The use of clearly visible dive flags.
  • The use of diver’s floatlines and/or SMBs.
  • Being vigilant in avoiding areas with known boat traffic.
  • Avoiding surfacing or swimming at the stern of the boat without the crew’s knowledge.
  • Ensuring divers follow crew instructions when attempting to board the vessel.

2. Reinforcing to boat operators that they need to be diver aware, by:

  • Having an adequate lookout at a high point to be able to see divers who will be low in the water;
  • Recognising the different types of dive flags (and light signals at night), which indicate divers are in the vicinity.
  • Being aware of the laws and regulations regarding exclusion zones and speed limits that surround ‘Diver Below’ warnings, if any. In the absence of regulations, care and slow speeds are still required.
  • Ensuring they do not have the propellers engaged while performing pick-ups; and receiving confirmation that all divers are clear of the propellers prior to re-engaging.

If divers and boat operators work together, propeller injuries and deaths can be reduced, even eliminated.

DAN will be running a safety and campaign until the end of 2018, predominantly on our socials (Facebook: DAN Asia Pacific, Blog: daninsider.org) If you miss anything you can find out more at danap.org/DAN_diving_safety/campaigns.php.

We encourage you to support the campaign and share the information provided with your diving friends so that we are all working together to prevent unnecessary injury and loss of life.

www.danap.org / www.daninsider.org

Scott Jamieson | DAN Asia Pacific

2018 PADI Elite Instructor Award Reminder

With more than half the year now behind us, it’s a great time to check your current certifications count to see how you’re tracking. You may be on track to receive a 2018 PADI Elite Instructor Award and you can make plans on how to reach your desired milestone by the end of the year.

What is the Elite Instructor Award? The Elite Instructor Award distinguishes PADI Professionals by highlighting their experience as PADI Members and gives a means to promote the elite status to student divers, potential students and prospective employers.

Top certifying PADI Instructors will receive the Elite Instructor Award for issuing 50, 100, 150, 200 or more than 300 certifications in 2018.

They will also receive an e-badge to include on emails, websites, blogs, and social media pages. Winners will be notified during the first quarter of next year.

For more information, including qualifying certifications, visit the PADI Elite Instructor Award page on the PADI Pros’ Site.

To see your current certifications count, view your Students Count Report.

If you have any questions please contact customerservice.ap@padi.com.

PADI Specialty of the Quarter – Quarter 3 (July-September 2018)

PADI Specialty of the Quarter – Quarter 3

Make sure you are leveraging this popular continuing education campaign for Quarter 3, 2018.

This campaign and accompanying marketing tools will help you to grow the interest in continuing education. PADI Specialty courses offer the perfect opportunity to widen the knowledge of your students, better understand their interests as divers, and make sure they come back to do more courses. You can also tie this in with the free PADI MSD Application available in the Asia Pacific region.

Each quarter there will be two PADI Specialty courses. This will provide flexibility to promote both or select the one which best suits your dive shop while still being a focused campaign. PADI Asia Pacific will also be promoting these specialty courses throughout the quarter to consumers.

Quarter 3, 2018;

  • PADI Underwater Navigator Specialty course
  • PADI Equipment Specialist Specialty course

You can also start planning for Q4 which will feature the PADI Digital Underwater Photographer Specialty course and the PADI Wreck Diver Specialty course.

Q3 Resources & Tools:

To help you promote the PADI Specialty of the Quarter you can download free digital marketing materials in English, Korean, Traditional and Simplified Chinese which includes web banners, headers, and more.

DOWNLOAD MARKETING TOOLS

Questions?

Contact your PADI Regional Manager, Regional Training Consultant or the PADI Asia Pacific marketing team on marketing@padi.com.au.

The New PADI Dive Shop Locator (Beta) is Live!


Getting people to learn scuba diving (and continue on after they’re certified) is a team effort, and PADI® is always looking for ways to make Members’ businesses stand out and shine. The Dive Shop Locator (DSL) was created more than a decade ago so new divers could find dive training they could trust.

With the newly redesigned and repackaged PADI.com, it was time for the DSL to get a refresh. As the new PADI DSL Beta is unveiled, PADI Members will see a host of exciting features – all with the goal of making sure their business keeps growing. Here’s a quick FAQ of what you can expect from the new PADI Dive Shop Locator.

What are the key features to the new DSL?

Check out the value and sheer number of these new features of the PADI DSL Beta.

  • Better User Experience – The user journey matches what users expect from a location-based search experience from sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Google Maps. This includes cleaner page layouts and information hierarchy, intuitive task flows and visual consistency.
  • Enhanced Map View – Adjustments to the way search looks at geography has improved the look and feel of the visual indicator dive shop flags to clearly indicate the type of dive center shown on the map (g. a PADI 5 Star).
  • Improved Filtering – New filters use more descriptive terminology and intuitive filter groupings.
  • Faster Loading Speed/Performance – The new PADI DSL is a quicker experience regardless of whether your area has high or low bandwidth.
  • More Detailed Dive Shop Pages – Each dive shop has a unique URL and page. This will allow the pages to be “deeplinked,” which helps marketing teams and members share the URL via email and on websites, and allows pages to be indexed by search engines like Google.
  • Better Mobile Experience – The new DSL is a fully mobile friendly and responsive experience.
  • Improved Search – Users will have the ability to search by almost any (reasonable) dive-related phrase to locate a dive shop or location.
  • More Clearly Delineated Ads – Sponsored ads are displayed within the search results list and map, making them more visible to end-users.
  • Filter by Freediving Centers –  Individual dive shop pages and filter menu includes the ability to filter by freediving centres.
  • Visibility for PADI 5 Star – Search results show all shops but, list 5 Star Dive Centres and Resorts more prominently.

What is a “Beta” and how will this work?

The Dive Shop Locator is an important tool that divers find and connect with dive centres and resorts. To fully understand how any new design affects this process, the PADI team will make both the current and new design available to users and allow them to switch between each experience and leave feedback. For the next two to three months, the team will monitor interact with each, adjusting each design as needed and sharing the learnings.

How long will the DSL Beta run?

The DSL Beta will initially run for eight to 12 weeks, but will be flexible so that enough data can be collected to make the DSL the best it can be.

GDPR – New Privacy Regulations in the Old World

GDPR – New Privacy Regulations in the Old World

You have likely heard that the European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is here. But do you know what it is, what it means and who it applies to? Here’s an overview.

What is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)?

The GDPR legislation replaces the 1995 Data Protection Directive and was designed to unify data protection laws across the European Union while providing greater data control and protection for European Union citizens.

Why was it brought into force?

Today’s world revolves around data and it is dramatically different from the world in which the 1995 directive was developed. Many of the original provisions are valid and remain, but the increasing number of privacy and data breaches have made it imperative to update this policy for a number reasons – including the need to protect European Union citizens.

How is GDPR different from the 1995 Data Protection Directive?

Who does it apply to?

  • GDPR primarily applies to businesses established in the European Union but it also applies to businesses based outside European Union that offer goods or services to European Union residents or collect data about European Union residents (Article 2 – Material Scope and Article 3 – Territorial Scope)

What does compliance mean?

  • Because of the complexity of this legislation, full compliance requirements will vary. Please seek information from an appropriately qualified source such as your professional or legal counsel.

When does compliance enforcement begin?

  • 25 May 2018

In there a grace period?

  • The European Parliament approved GDPR in April 2016 and if was officially published in May 2016. There is no grace period.

Where can I go for more information?

Sources:

Disclaimer

The materials in this post do not constitute legal advice and others and are provided for general information purposes only. It is recommended that you contact your general or legal counsel.

How Diving Affects Your Health and Circulatory System

By the Divers Alert Network Medical Team www.danap.org

Scuba diving exposes you to many effects, including immersion, cold, hyperbaric gases, elevated breathing pressure, exercise and stress, as well as a post dive risk of gas bubbles circulating in your blood. Your heart’s capacity to support an elevated blood output decreases with age and with disease. Having a healthy heart is of the utmost importance to your safety while scuba diving as well as to your ability to exercise generally and your life span.

In this article, we explore how the various aspects of diving affect your heart and cardiovascular system.

Effects of Immersion

Immersion in water near the temperature of the human body exposes your body to a pressure gradient, which shifts blood from the vessels in your legs to those in your chest cavity. This increases the volume of blood within your chest by up to 24 ounces (700 milliliters).

Your heart thus takes in an additional 6 to 8 ounces (180 to 240 milliliters) of blood, resulting in an enlargement of all four chambers, an increase in pressure in your right atrium, a more than 30-percent increase in cardiac output and a slight increase in your overall blood pressure.

Baroreceptors (sensors that perceive a change in blood pressure) within your body’s major vessels react to all these changes by decreasing the activity of your sympathetic nervous system, which governs what’s popularly called the “fight-or-flight” response. As a result, your heart rate declines and the concentration in your plasma of norepinephrine, a hormone of the sympathetic nervous system drops; in response to the drop in norepinephrine, your kidneys excrete more sodium, and your urine production increases.

Effects of Cold

Water has high thermal conductivity — that is, your body loses more heat when you’re immersed in water than when you’re in dry air. You’ll feel more comfortable at a given air temperature than when you’re immersed in water of the same temperature. And when your body loses heat, that intensifies the narrowing of your peripheral blood vessels (a condition known as “peripheral vasoconstriction”). This in turn sends more blood to your heart, which increases the filling pressure on the right side of your heart and makes it pump more blood. Constriction of the body’s small arteries also increases the resistance to blood flowing through the periphery of your body, which raises your blood pressure, meaning your heart has to exert itself more to maintain an adequate flow of blood throughout your body.

Effects of Pressure

Breathing air under increased pressure, as you do when scuba diving, also affects your heart and circulatory system. Increased levels of oxygen cause vasoconstriction, increase your blood pressure and reduce your heart rate and heart output. And increased levels of carbon dioxide — which may accumulate in the body when you exercise during a dive, due to reduced pulmonary ventilation caused by dense gases — can increase the flow of blood through your brain, which can speed up oxygen toxicity if you’re breathing a hyperoxic gas mix (one with an elevated level of oxygen).

Effects of Exercise

Diving can be very physically demanding, but recreational divers have the option of choosing diving conditions and activities that typically do not require a lot of exertion. Nevertheless, any dive places some metabolic energy demands on your body. For example, slow, leisurely swimming on the surface represents a moderate-intensity activity, while swimming with fins on the surface requires up to 40 percent less energy than barefoot swimming. But the addition of scuba equipment increases drag on the swimmer and thus the energy cost of swimming. A 1996 paper in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise showed that wearing just one scuba tank may increase a diver’s energy consumption by 25 percent over regular surface swimming at the same speed and that using a drysuit may result in another 25 percent increase in energy consumption.

Most dives at neutral buoyancy and with no current require only short intervals of intermittent swimming at a slow pace and thus represent low- to moderate-intensity exercise. Exercise intensity is measured by a value known as metabolic equivalent (MET), with 1 MET representing the amount of energy consumed when at rest. It is suggested that divers be able to sustain exercise at 6 METs for a period of 20 to 30 minutes. Since people can sustain only about 50 percent of their peak exercise capacity for a protracted period, it is recommended that divers be able to pass an exercise stress test at 12 METs.

Effects of Stress

Your autonomic nervous system (ANS) — the largely involuntary system that regulates internal functions such as your heart rate, respiratory rate and digestion — is affected by diving, too. Among the components of the ANS are the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems; while the sympathetic system governs your body’s “fight-or-flight” response, the parasympathetic system governs resting functions and helps your body conserve energy. In healthy individuals, diving generally increases parasympathetic effects, preserving the heart rate and a measure known as heart rate variability. A dive that is perceived as stressful, however, pushes the ANS in the other direction, meaning sympathetic effects prevail — resulting in an increase in the heart rate, a decline in heart rate variability and an increase in the risk of arrhythmia.

Serious Adverse Effects

Most of the effects that diving has on your heart and circulatory system fall within your body’s capacity to adapt, but sometimes serious adverse reactions can occur. A reaction known as bradyarrhythmia (a very slow and irregular heartbeat) can cause sudden death upon a diver’s entry into the water, especially in individuals with a pre-existing rhythm anomaly. Conversely, tachyarrhythmia (a very rapid and irregular heartbeat) can also cause sudden death, especially in divers with structural or ischemic heart disease. And overexertion or the effects of stress may strain the heart and result in acute manifestations of previously undiagnosed ischemic heart disease.

Breath-hold diving can have particularly serious adverse cardiac effects; these effects occur in quick succession in a response known as the “diving reflex.” Its most significant elements include bradycardia (a slowing of the heart rate); the peripheral vasoconstriction reaction described above; and progressive hypoxia (or lack of an adequate supply of oxygen). To avoid bursting a lung, scuba divers must not hold their breath during ascent.

5 Ways to Make Your Exhibition a Success at a Dive Expo

Exhibiting at a dive trade show can be a beneficial investment for your business, however it is imperative that if you do decide to make the investment, you need to make it worthwhile.

Here are 5 ways to make your exhibit a success.

Develop an objective for the show. For example:

  • Build awareness for your brand.
  • Build a database to allow you to contact them after the show.
  • Sell your products and services at the show.

Attract people to your stand and build a crowd

  • Have great signage that makes an impact.
  • Have images or products positioned to get attendees to come in and have a closer look, allowing you to start a conversation.
  • Use a PA system to announce what you’re promoting at your booth.
  • Don’t just sit behind a desk, get out and actively engage with visitors or passers-by.

Have a call to action – a reason to sign up or purchase now

  • This could be a limited release product, such as ‘limited quantities’ or ‘limited style’ of product.
  • Put a time limit on the special so they have to choose right away (or in the next few weeks if you can get their contact details).

Create a database

  • Use this to contact attendees after the show with a reminder about your products and services. To obtain a large database people need a good reason to give you their contact details.
  • You could do this via a contest, for example: ‘Enter the draw and you could win’. After the show you could give out your major prizes then contact everyone else with the notification and another call to action. Ensure you have the legalities organised before running a contest through your business.

Staffing

  • Have well briefed and quality staff on the stand. Make sure they know the products, services and are happy and smiling.

What else could you consider?

  • Can you collaborate with another operator to save on costs?
  • Are there one or more operators that you can work with that will complement your exhibit?
  • If possible, ask to position your exhibit in a busy area next to complementing services or large exhibits that will also attract large audiences.

Damian Jones
PADI Regional Manager