Don’t Let Complacency Kill You

During a recent dive trip to Chuuk, I really wanted to see the San Francisco Maru wreck. I never imagined, however, that I would have a near-death experience immediately upon entering the water. 

Chuuk Lagoon is often called a wreck divers paradise.

Pieter-Jan van Ooij

Pieter-Jan van Ooij, MD, PhD, is the head of the Department of Research, Innovation, and Education at the Royal Netherlands Navy’s Diving Medical Centre (DMC).

Subjects participate in a study about pulmonary oxygen toxicity after Table 6 treatments in Amsterdam.

Advanced Underwater Navigation

Most divers’ love of the sport stems from a drive to explore a foreign environment. With exploration must come the ability to navigate. Nowhere else on Earth can one become more lost than in a liquid, while simultaneously requiring constant individual concentration on safety techniques, breathing gas, buoyancy, horizontal trim, depth, and time.

Successful navigation depends on one’s ability to master the basic fundamental skills of diving.

For Want of a Nail, the Battle Was Lost

It was 2004, the dawn of digital photography, and I was conflicted about whether to shoot film or digital. I had brought housings for both cameras with me to Thailand. Carrying two housings on a dive was ponderous, but I could manage it if I didn’t take two sets of strobes. My solution was to rig both housings with wet connectors called EO pigtails, which went into the regular sync socket, allowing me to connect and disconnect my strobes underwater.

Frink checks out the camera table on a liveaboard

Ripoff Reef

When I dive in an unfamiliar area, I tell the dive operator I want to start at their best spot — the site with everything. If I get bored with that, maybe I’ll try other sites. If you came to my home turf on the Kona Coast of Hawaiʻi Island and asked me for the site that has everything, I would send you to Ripoff Reef.

Hawaiian spinner dolphins often use the Honōkohau boat channel as a resting and socializing area.

Impacts of Climate Change on a Deep-Sea Fish

As I drove west past Port Alberni on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, on my way to a photo shoot, I watched in disbelief as the temperature gauge in my vehicle rose from 64°F (18°C) to 113°F (45°C). I thought something was wrong with my gauge, but a local radio station reported the same temperature. British Columbia had record-high temperatures throughout the province that week in June 2021.

A plainfin midshipman (Porichthys notatus) in the Salish Sea

Free Weights

Strength training can benefit divers, who need strength to wear and transport heavy gear. Other benefits include greater bone density, increased metabolism, and cardiovascular strength.

Alternating Renegade Rows

Blue-Ringed Daze

What diver isn’t enchanted by an octopus, especially a beguiling beauty with the reputation of an assassin? Even though we searched for legendary blue-ringed octopuses across their territorial waters of the Asia-Pacific, it took five years before we made our first sighting in Lembeh Strait.

Smaller males attach tightly to the females’ mantles for extended periods while mating.

Benefits of Group Travel

Planning group travel through a local dive shop can help prevent people from taking advantage of you, because the dive shop has likely researched the vendors they use and may already have experience with them.

Stephen Frink Digital Master Class, Key Largo, Florida Keys

DAN’s Diver Participation Survey

Dive training agencies track the number of certifications they issue, but the number of active divers worldwide is still unverified. As dive research grows, identifying the denominator for the dive population is increasingly important.

Alana Edwards uses her smart phone to scan QR code to direct her to the DAN demographics and experience survey.