Scuba Pursuits went into liquidation a number of weeks ago. Ian Forster, owner of Dosthill Quarry and Guildenburgh Water, has now acquired the Scuba Pursuits trading name and its assets. These include three Facebook pages and two websites. The aim is to keep Scuba Pursuits operating as a training and retail facility.
Sarah Bagdi will be re-joining Scuba Pursuits in Cannock. The centre will be holding a re-launch opening on Wednesday 23rd April from 12 noon through to 8pm. If you are in the area, you are most welcome to drop in.
Scuba Schools International, a premier education and business support company is excited to welcome Jean-Claude Monachon as the Vice President of International Sales and Marketing for SSI.
Jean-Claude joined PADI Europe in 1991. Since that time, Jean-Claude has been involved in every aspect of management and training for dive centers, resorts and dive professionals. With hard work, dedication and persistence, he became the PADI Europe CEO in 2001. Six years later, he was responsible for International Business Development and lately VP Sales & Marketing for the EMEA regions (Europe, Middle East and Africa). His focus was acquisition, retention, corporate identity and building brand awareness. Jean Claude’s experience also spans the globe in diving – managing a dive center and resort, representing manufacturing and all facets of dive training.
Beyond the many years at PADI, Jean-Claude feels that a change in the industry will bring a boost of energy for Resorts and Retail businesses. Jean-Claude is a strong believer that the SSI Business Model - Swim, Snorkel, Free Diving and Scuba – supported by more than 50 local SSI Service Centers and subsidiaries will strengthen the customer service and bring SSI even closer to the diving market.
“We are very excited to have Jean-Claude join the ranks of SSI worldwide, stated Gerald Skrobanek, President. Jean-Claude is a breath of fresh air and we look forward to all the ways he can help us in both sales and marketing! It is inspirational to see an expert realize the ‘value of change,’ not only for the good of their own personal growth, but for setting direction in the industry.”
“It’s nice to be around people who are as passionate about diving as I am and I could not be more excited,” Jean-Claude Monachon, SSI Vice President of International Sales and Marketing.
This guidance for divers in England is issued today (Monday 7th April 2014) by the following agencies as a joint statement: BSAC, GUE, PADI, PSAI, SSI, SAA and TDI / SDI.
BSAC, acting as the National Governing Body for Scuba diving and working with SAA and PADI, has been negotiating on behalf of all divers and diver training agencies with the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) with respect to the interpretation of the legal requirements for divers under the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 (MCAA).
After lengthy consultation, a set of guidelines for all divers diving in English waters has now been agreed. These guidelines enable divers to go about their standard normal diving and training activities without a requirement for a licence and divers can use the guidelines to ensure that they remain within the law.
Activities that do not require a licence include:
• Deploying and recovering temporary shot lines for divers
• Using delayed or permanently inflated SMBs
• Using a lifting bag to recover items which have been underwater for less than 12 months
• Conducting surveys of shipwrecks by hand
• Using lifting bags for underwater litterpicks.
For other certain activities, the MMO still requires either prior notification or an application for a licence; the MMO can be consulted for guidance in these cases. Similar guidance will be available in due course for Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish waters.
All diver-training agencies active in England endorse these guidelines and actively encourage their instructors, members and divers to abide by them.
For further guidance please refer to the Marine Licensing: Guidance for Recreational Divers information sheet.
For all additional queries or questions regarding these new guidelines please contact the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) direct:
Telephone 0300 123 1032 or email
This update has been issued by:
British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC)
Global Underwater Explorers (GUE)
Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI)
Professional Scuba Association International (PSAI)
Scuba Schools International (SSI)
Sub Aqua Association (SAA)
Scuba Diving International; Technical Diving International (TDI / SDI)
For the last three years, DAN HQ in Durham (North Carolina) has been running a bi-monthly diving medicine / research / safety series of lectures at their office in West Colony Place. The talk is held on the first Wednesday of every other month at 19:00. This programme provides an excellent opportunity for anyone with a thirst for diving knowledge to listen to a variety of local experts discuss dive medicine, research, and safety.
The lecture tomorrow (Wednesday 2nd April 2014) is entitled “When Pressure Changes are Not About Diving,” and will be given by Dr. Neal Pollock.
For those of you unfamiliar with Dr Pollock, he is a Research Director at Divers Alert Network and a Research Associate at the Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Environmental Physiology, Duke University Medical Center.
Divers are known to experience pressure changes as they explore the underwater world, but there is less recognition of others that face related environmental conditions. This presentation will contrast the exposures of divers with those of aviators, astronauts, miners and even canning workers.
Doors will open at 18:15 for a pre-event social, and ‘Down Under‘ very kindly serve light refreshments. The presentation begins at 19:00 and will last approximately 45 – 55 minutes, followed by a question-and-answer session.
Admission to the lecture is free, and no registration is required. So come early, come hungry and hear Neal wax lyrical about pressure changes.
The next lecture will be delivered by Niles W. Clarke. He will be discussing “The Science of Breathing Underwater” on Wednesday 4th June.
Shearwater Research has announced today that they are entering the recreational dive market with the launch of the Nitrox Recreational Mode for the Petrel dive computer.
We have been advised that this new Nitrox mode is clearer and easier to use than ever before. The new mode offers optional safety stops, obvious warnings and plenty of customisation, and will make the Petrel a useful computer for air and Enriched Air Nitrox (EANx) diving. When divers are ready to take their diving to the next level, the Petrel will support their trimix and rebreather requirements.
Key Features of this new mode include:
- Big, Clear Displays
- Optional Safety Stops
- Decompression when you need it
- Configurable Bottom Row
- No-Decompression Limit Planner
- Simple Menu System
Apparently this new recreational mode has simple settings that allow the diver to use three air or nitrox breathing gas mixtures, whilst giving a greater emphasis on the no-decompression limits (NDL). A bar graph display will turn from green to red as the diver approaches their NDL. In addition a 3 minute countdown safety stop will start when the diver hits 6 metres / 20 feet on their ascent. If the Petrel goes into a mandatory decompression situation, the display turns red and displays, “DECO STOP” with the depth and time at that stop.
Do you want to get trained by a renowned diving and environmental physiologist? Dr Neal W Pollock will be heading up the DAN 75th Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Course in May. This six-day course will be held at Little Cayman Beach Resort in Little Cayman from Saturday 3rd to Saturday 10th May 2014. The course is designed primarily for physicians. It may be of value to emergency medical personnel, paramedics, nurses and other professionals with interest in diving as well.
The program delivers a range of topics to orient participants to the state of the art of diving safety, diving medicine, hyperbaric medicine and environmental physiology. Classroom time includes lectures and interactive case studies sessions.
Presentation topics include:
- Medical and physical fitness to dive
- Diving safety – issues and current research
- Hyperbaric medicine – applications, protocols and mechanisms
- Decompression physiology and pathophysiology
- Diving injuries and management
- Considerations for thermal stress, altitude exposure, freediving and special populations
- Controversies in diving medicine
Further information is available here.
Did you know that International Women’s Day is annually marked on 8th March? Me neither. Why do I mention this? Santi has chosen this day to launch their new ‘Ladies First’ range of dry and undersuits.
A number of suit manufacturers have been producing a ladies cut drysuit for awhile. Santi has now joined their ranks with the launch of their ‘Ladies First’ drysuit. This membrane suit is based on the current Santi E.Motion drysuit. It is constructed from an ultra flexible material and is ultra lightweight. I saw this suit at the 2014 Dusseldorf Boot Show and believe it to weight approximately 4kg. The ‘Ladies First’ suit has a number of nice features that come as standard. A warm neck collar, bib and braces / suspenders, a choice of seals (latex, neoprene and silicone), and two cargo pockets on the thighs.
The pockets are slightly narrower cut to ensure a more optimal fit on a petite leg. Both pockets benefit from a metal D-ring and a couple of bungee loops. If you have never used bungee loops before, they are a godsend when you are rooting through your pockets looking for a specific item. It means that provided you have clipped various items to the bungee loop, you can turf your pockets out underwater and you don’t lose a piece of kit. In addition one of the pockets has an external zipped pocket on the outside of the flap and this is handy for stashing a Trilobite cutting tool.
Front zipped suits are always a better option for ladies because the tailoring can be more precise. Generally the biggest bit that a lady has to get into a drysuit is their good child bearing hips, unlike a man who traditionally has broad shoulders. Ladies tend to have smaller shoulders compared to their hips, therefore a front donning suit is normally the preferred choice because you achieve a better cut / fit. The radical thing that Santi has done on this suit is switch the front plastic T zip route, and I suspect that it won’t be long before the other manufacturers do the same thing. On the ‘Ladies First’ suit it runs from the top right shoulder down to the left hip instead of the usual route of top left shoulder to bottom right hip. Why is this so special? If the front zip is routed in the traditional way on a petite female, the manufacturer can struggle to get the shoulder dump in the right location because the zip can be in the way. By simply switching sides, Santi can ensure the shoulder dump is located in the best place, what ever size of female.
Overall this is quite an attractive feminine suit without being girly. Interestingly the colour scheme – black with fuchsia highlights – is strongly reminiscent of Apeks Aqua Lung’s ‘Twilight’ highlight colour in their ladies ‘Details’ range. Purple really is the new pink. If you don’t fancy fuchsia, Santi also offers the choice of black with lemon highlights and black with black highlights. The complete package comes in a practical bag and you also get a limited edition woolly hat. I am certainly curious to see what this suit dives like.
Article first published in X-Ray Magazine.
Scuba Schools International (SSI), a premier education and business support organisation, is pleased to announce the appointment of Adam Wood as SSI Technical Training Director.
As one of the new breed of young dive professionals, Adam is striving to raise the bar of technical diving and challenge old perceptions and philosophies to make exceptional divers and instructors. Adam’s passion is teaching, passing on knowledge & skills in Technical, Sidemount and Closed Circuit Rebreathers, both at user, instructor and instructor trainer level. He is focused on making diving aspirational, cool and exciting with the goal attracting a new divers and retaining old ones.
Adam owns one of the UK’s largest certifying dive centres and is one of a select group of SSI Recreational, Technical and CCR Instructor Trainers. He was also a contributing editor to the new XR & TXR Technical & Technical CCR Materials for SSI. As one of the hardest working people in diving you can find Adam teaching almost every day either in one of the UK’s satellite centres or in worldwide destinations.
“Having seen the benefits the SSI system brings to the dive centre I now want to blur the lines between recreational and technical diving whilst making the higher end of technical diving more extreme and safer than ever!” “I have supported the production of the recent XR and TXR materials and am underway with the next new releases – you better be excited!” commented Adam Wood, SSI Technical Training Director.
Robert Stoss, SSI President said “It is great to have Adam on board, we have been watching him grow in the technical diving auditorium and this is an excellent opportunity for us both, he knows how to structure new technical programs and understands how they will be implemented within the successful dive centre. He has a number of great projects planned for 2014 and with the new opportunities available within SSI we can take technical diving to the next level.”
Adam has been lucky to be invited to be involved in some exciting projects around the world. More recently he has been contracted to work with and train the BBC Natural History unit, acting as trainer, technical advisor and dive supervisor.
TeXpediationR is a project Adam hopes will flourish, allowing all divers to participate in Expedition diving at their own level. Adam has acted on screen, been an aid to under water filming and provided logistical and technical support for worldwide projects, most recently he has been filming with the BBC in North Carolina inside the wreck of the Aeolus with over 200 Sand Tiger sharks.
Remember, SSI is not just a certification agency. WE ARE YOUR PARTNER IN BUSINESS! What we offer around the world is way ahead of even much larger industries. If you want to break the bonds that hold you back from reaching your potential, either email us or visit our website.
Happy St David’s Day one and all.
The 1st day of March also marks the start of something special for TEKDiveUSA.2014 attendees. For the next 30 days you have the opportunity to win a rather beautiful Light Monkey 26 watt LED lighting system worth US$1,530!
Simply buy a day or weekend ticket for TEKDiveUSA.2014 during March 2014. Then be at the Friday night BBQ social (17th May) where the draw will take place. You must be present to win this gorgeous lighting system. And if you have already bought your tickets, you are automatically entered for this amazing draw.
Just make sure you buy a BBQ ticket and you are there on the night.
WORLD EXCLUSIVE – BREAKING NEWS – We have just received this rebreather news from Vobster Quay about the Sentinel.
“Vobster Diving Limited (trading as Vobster Quay) is pleased to announce that it has entered discussions with VR Technology Holdings in view of providing support, service and supply of Sentinel closed circuit rebreathers to the recreational diving market.
“This is a very exciting time for us, and we will aim to provide an update in the coming weeks once we are in a position to do so”, said Martin Stanton, Managing Director of Vobster Diving Ltd.”