Travel Smarter: DAN Offers New Travel Insurance Programs

With travel to become more available soon, DAN’s newly released travel insurance offerings enable you to stay in control of your adventure. Our new trip and annual programs are backed by DAN’s 40 years of experience and expertise and offer protections for a wide range of travel-related situations. You can purchase an annual plan to cover all your travel for a year or a trip plan to cover a single trip. The available options ensure there’s a plan that’s right for your needs.

A diver is in the water at the surface at dusk as a liveaboard waits nearby.

Physics, Biophysics and Decompression Sickness

Jens-Christian Meiners, Ph.D., a professor of physics and biophysics at the University of Michigan, focuses his laboratory’s research on mechanics of biological systems, primarily the dynamical properties of DNA and DNA–protein complexes. Meiners and his team are currently working on tissue mechanics and tissue damage through gas bubbles in the spinal cord, or spinal cord decompression sickness (DCS), which won him the 2019 DAN/R.W. “Bill” Hamilton Memorial Dive Medicine Research Grant.

man diving in cave using a reel

Program Spotlight: DAN Presents 2021 Webinar Series

The 2021 DAN Live webinar series will help promote a culture of safety and spark community connections online. Presented by DAN experts from our research, risk mitigation, medicine, training and insurance teams, the new DAN Live series will cover various topics, including fill station safety, ear barotrauma, DAN research updates, the latest information about COVID-19 and diving, and more. Sessions will occur on the third Thursday of each month.

A tablet screen shows the landing page for the DAN webinar series.

Environmental Considerations for Disinfection

Divers, dive operators and dive professionals must continue to practice good hygiene and disinfection of scuba equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic. Disinfectant products kill microorganisms. When discharged into the environment, they can continue to kill or cause harm until they break down. Disinfecting scuba equipment that contacts the eyes, nose and mouth should be routine for all dive operators. Know the composition of the products you use, and be aware of the potential impacts of disposal.

A man sprays disinfectant on boat surfaces

Act Now to Combat Climate Change

In the six years Neha Mani has been diving, she has seen a notable difference in coral reef vitality as a result of climate change. Coral skeletons on the powdery sand of the seafloor haunt the living coral with their cautionary tale. Numerous factors contribute to coral bleaching, but we know it is an extension of our changing climate. The steps we take to protect the reefs have broader benefits beyond just the coral. Through our conscious efforts to protect our oceans, we can hopefully pave a path to environmental recovery.

A female diver swims by an underwater shipwreck.

Old Habits Die Hard

Make it your standard practice to gently and completely turn on your air. If you’re an instructor, consider not teaching students the quarter-turn back. Dive operations should instruct their staff not to perform the quarter-turn-back practice on customers’ cylinders. Confusing the direction of a handwheel does not happen only to new or inexperienced divers. There have been anecdotal reports of divemasters on busy boats accidentally turning off customers’ cylinders and then performing only a quarter-turn on.

A diver underwater gives an out of air signal by putting his hand across his throat.

Central California Photo Gallery

View Andy and Allison Salmon’s bonus photo gallery that accompanies their feature on diving Central California.

a close-up photo of a coralline sculpin

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.

Getting Centered

With the COVID-19 pandemic curbing international travel, divers can still choose to dive locally. Andy and Allison Sallmon take us along on their road trip to Central California dive sites, where we can discover macro subjects in Morro Bay and bountiful marine life at the well-protected sites at Carmel and Monterey Bay.

The ethereal view of California’s Big Sur coastline features rugged cliffs, rock islets and secluded, sandy beaches.

La Paz Photo Gallery

After reading Tanya Burnett’s feature about La Paz, see more of her amazing images in this photo gallery.