Incident Insights

Learning from your own mistakes and misfortunes is crucial, but don’t miss the opportunity to learn from others’.

DAN has maintained a diving incident database since 1989. Originally limited to scuba diving incidents, it now includes open-circuit scuba, breath-hold and rebreather incidents. We collect, analyze, anonymize and publish this data in the DAN Annual Diving Reports and in these insights for the benefit of the diving community. Often featuring expert commentary, these summaries help divers of all experience levels improve their risk management skills and identify safe diving practices. Scroll down to browse the case summaries, or use the search field to the right.

To report an incident, click here. DAN relies on divers to voluntarily report cases and near misses. No individual will be identified in any case reports published or presented orally. We appreciate every diver’s time and effort in telling their stories and sharing their insights.

Inflator Valve Stuck, Causing Rapid Ascent

This diver’s quick reactions prevented a more serious situation developing. Orally inflating a BCD is a basic skill taught in open water diver courses.

Read more

Rebreather Diver Bails Out Due to Frequent Solenoid Firing

An omitted cell check on a re-breather leads to a near miss after frequent solenoid firing warns the diver to bail out.

Read more

A Runaway Ascent in a Dry Suit

The key to avoiding a feet-high inversion in a dry suit is to have only enough air in the drysuit to prevent the suit squeezing the diver.

Read more

CCR Diver Develops Immersion Pulmonary Edema

The diver was experienced but improperly prepared for the thermal stress of the dive. The equipment improvisation may or may not have contributed to the event.

Read more

Inverted on the Descent Line

Divers with disabilities need able-bodied buddies who are aware of their condition and trained to assist them. There are a number of agencies that provide such training.

Read more

A Flood Without Flotation

A rebreather diver failed to test her rig after valve replacement. Her rig flooded, leaving her without buoyancy and breathing gas.

Read more

An Ear Barotrauma Prevented Further Diving on Trip

Depth changes proved problematic for this diver’s ears. This is indeed a real consideration when diving on a reef with a variable profile of depths. Frequently changing depths may be an issue with inert gas uptake as we are taught to avoid “saw-toothed” profiles.

Read more

A Regulator Hose Rupture Could Be Prevented

If it doesn’t look right, it is probably not right. A regulator hose ruptures at 30 feet, causing the diver to make a free ascent.

Read more

Diving on Empty

Omitting the predive check could have cost this diver his life. The predive check will verify that there is enough breathing gas in the tank and that the regulator works fine.

Read more

Heavy Currents Contribute to Serious Head Injury

Heavy seas create problems for a diabetic diver who nearly drowns after a ladder hits his head.

Read more