A Rude Awakening

Although training emphasizes the theoretical aspects of safe freediving, sometimes it takes real-world experience to really make it sink in. Freediving is risky so it is always important to have your skills sharp.

Cory Wagner performs medical services in water

Now I Know Better

A dive photo instructor witnessed a diver perform a rapid, uncontrolled ascent to the surface. Thankfully, the dive instructor’s rescue training came in handy. Read more about the incident.

Two divers pause at coral review a checklist

An Emergency Ascent Just in Time

Dive safety experts now advise divers to always dive with their tank valves completely open — not turned back a half or quarter turn. Are you up to date on the rules? Read one diver’s story.

An unconscious diver floats near coral

Training Beyond Borders

The Training Beyond Borders Diving Emergency Symposium is the first program of its kind, offering DAN courses to firefighters, Red Cross personnel, civil protection emergency responders and National Marine Park rangers in the Yucatán — all with full scholarships.

A grumpy-looking lionfish

Escape from the Bubble Cloud

When his regulator hose burst during a dive, a diver not only lost his primary air source, he also was engulfed by a cloud of bubbles that made it nearly impossible to see or hear.

A female dive buddy gives her dive buddy the regulator so he can get air

Rapid Ascent, Rapid Response

A diver was having difficulty breathing and had extreme fatigue, numbness and a host of other symptoms. He may have had an arterial gas embolism (AGE). Read more about how a rescuer used his skills to help the diver.

Man lies on stretcher wearing an oxygen mask

It’s the Little Things

Seemingly minor problems can amount to bigger ones underwater. Predive
anxiety and a fogged mask compounded to nearly trigger a state of panic in
this diver.

A diver floats near a boat

Right People in the Right Places

After falling off of a boat, a quick-thinking witness was able to provide assistance to an unconscious diver.

Female diver works hard to tow up an unconscious male diver

Save a Diver, Save Yourself

Divers can’t save themselves unless they understand what’s happening and how to evaluate the problem, keep breathing and act. It sounds simple, but the rescue diver course helped me solidify my safety and survival skills. I may not remember every detail, but one item still stands out for me as invaluable for a new diver: Any dive can be stopped at any time, for any reason, without question. To that I would add “and without embarrassment.” That advice would eventually save me.

Divers geared up make their way from the shore to the water.

Keep Your Skills Sharp

An emergency skills instructor saw first-hand how these important skills matter. His friend was able to help his mother when she was choking. Read more about important safety skills.

Man performs Heimlich on a woman