The skipper of the MV Halton (Bob Anderson) is seeking new boat crew for the 2017 season.
The sturdy Halton is 21 mt /70 ft former Danish trawler providing day-boat and liveaboard charters to divers in Scapa Flow and beyond.
She is primarily based in Scapa Flow and dives from Trondheim in Norway to the Hebrides and Malin Head.
The job includes filling cylinders, keeping the dive deck tidy, rope work and looking after the divers.
The hours can be punishing, the time away wearing and living on the boat claustrophobic.
This is not a long-term diving holiday. However time is allowed for the crew to get into the water and dive some remarkable places. You’ll be part of a strong supportive team and receive training in areas you are unsure.
Bob Anderson has traditionally employed a diver because they understand the customers.
“Please be very aware you will be ‘front of house’ and be facing clients daily: a good manner with people is of prime importance!
Having said all that, this is a rare and valuable opportunity. Your predecessors have laid a high standard and allowed to boat to cover an itinerary that is second to none. I have relied on some of the best people you can imagine and the Halton has absorbed their hard work into her oak.”
You will receive a wage, all food etc and accommodation aboard the boat and any training needed. If you can step up to that challenge, get in touch.
In the UK it is likely that paramedics and the ambulance service will administer Entonox gas as a pain relief.
Entonox – which is also known as ‘gas and air’ or laughing gas – is a 50:50 mix of Oygen and Nitrous Oxide. It is an anaesthetic gas, used for emergency on-site pain relief. However it should never be administered to a scuba / rebreather diver within 24 hours of surfacing.
Why is the administration of Entonox not advised during this 24 hour window? It is possible that that the use of Entonox gas can bring on Decompression Sickness because it increases the divers inert gas load. It could also cause gas in the body (middle ear, sinuses etc) to expand.
Divers by their very nature travel. It is quite possible to have a car accident on the way home after a dive, or at work, play or any other time within 24 hours of diving. It is also quite possible that the diver may not always be conscious or lucid following the accident. Therefore wearing something to alert paramedics that “NO ENTONOX” should be administered is useful. It helps to eliminate all doubt and helps keep the diver safe.
MV Valhalla – the Scapa Flow based liveboard – has kindly donated 400 of these bracelets to EUROTEK. The first 400 delegates that book a EUROTEK.2016 weekend delegate pass (Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th October 2016) will receive one of these in their Blancpain Fourth Element goodie bag.
It has just been announced that ‘Ghost Fishing’ founder Pascal Van Erp is to speak at EUROTEK on 8th and 9th October 2016.
Pascal is a passionate temperate wreck diver. However much to his dismay, he often found the North Sea wrecks he was diving were covered in nets that ‘ghost fished’.
‘Ghost Fishing’ is the term given to an abandoned fishing net, snagged on reef or wreck, that continues to trap marine wildlife. The marine life eventually dies, whilst the net continues to fish. It is estimated that up to 640,000 tonnes of nylon fishing gear lurks beneath the ocean, and more is added daily.
One day on a dive, Pascal recovered some net. It changed the ethos of his diving – from being an ardent wreck diver to a passionate environmental diver. He was soon heading up a team of divers actively recovering discarded and trapped nets from Netherlands waters. The ‘Ghost Fishing Foundation‘ was born.
Today a number of divers from Global Underwater Explorers are involved around the world (Germany, Greece, Pakistan, Spain, USA) with this dangerous, demanding and hazardous pursuit. And it has even come to the UK! Last year Pascal lead a team of Brits to recover ghost fishing nets in Scapa Flow.
You might think the story would finish there, but that would be to underestimate this tall quiet Dutchman. Pascal wanted a suitable solution. The answer was to recycle the recovered fishing gear into usable, knittable ECONYL® nylon yarn.
Enter stage left EUROTEK co-founder Rosemary E Lunn. She heard Pascal speak about the Ghost Fishing Project and thought the new fabric fascinating and something that divers would want to wear. She briefed Fourth Element about the project knowing that this Cornish company is heavily environmentally focused. In 2014 Fourth Element fully closed the loop on the recycling circle, by launching their ‘grave-to-cradle’ ‘OceanPositive‘ range of water-wear garments.
Pascal Van Erp is going reveal the latest projects the Ghost Fishing Foundation have been involved in at EUROTEK.2016. Tickets for this advanced diving conference are selling quickly. To secure your pass click here.
The phrase “plan the dive, dive the plan” was coined Hal Watts, founder of PSAI. (He was also the one to name an alternative air source ‘an octopus’, but that’s another story.)
Let’s face it, the fundamentals of dive planning remain the same for all divers, a process that every diver should follow. However, when it comes to recording your proposed plan, what do you do? It can be quite simple data or something far more complex, depending on what level of dive you have planned for.
I wish that ‘Deco-Decals‘ has been in existence in March 1999 during my trimix training. I can vividly remember sitting in the cabin of MV Karin – a Scapa Flow liveaboard – with a roll of masking tape, and very precisely covering my wrist slate with strips of it. Once this was evenly applied I would then carefully draw a specific grid in biro. Finally I would take my time to write out my dive schedule and two bailout tables. It would typically take me about 30 minutes to plan my dive and get my slate ready for a dive. Whilst I found the process quite theraputic, the task was a bit of a time thief, and I would lose chunks of my day complying with best practice in dive planning.
Today there is a better option for both OC and CCR advanced and technical divers to record their proposed dive – along with the various bail out options – thanks to a collaboration between Huw Singer and Brit based Bristol Channel Diving Services. The team designed and developed a range of self-adhesive, ‘traffic light’ colour-coded slate stickers called ‘Deco-Decals’. They should fit pretty much every scuba-diving wrist slate available (Size: 200mm x 118mm).
Green – the dive is going to plan.
Amber – depth or time has been exceed and adjustments should be made, ie next depth, next time.
Red – there is an issue that requires immediate action, ie loss of decompression gas, or bailout is needed.
We all know that colour is absorbed at depth, so what is the point of colour coding each decal? In low light conditions the diver will use a light to read their slate – and in blue water there will be a visual difference, albeit subtle. The significance of the colour coding also makes the students think beyond the immediate dive plan and understand the implications of properly planning for set scenarios, in addition to the original dive plan.
Each Deco-Decal is logically laid out, in an accessible format for training scenarios or every day diving up to 70 metre / 230 feet diving, and is available in both metric and imperial. (There is also a V2 version of Deco-Decal dive planning set which is printed slightly larger, apparently making it easier to read underwater for those with slightly older eyes.)
The green slate has a two useful key way points to prompt you where you need to turn your dive – gas pressure or time. Plus you can see the gas mixtures you are carrying, both back gas and deco gas.
The reusable decals are varnished and durable, and you simply write on them using an ultra-fine tipped waterproof marker. Once you have completed your dive and want to input fresh data, just wipe the decal clean with a ‘Magic Sponge’ / ‘Magic Eraser’ or similar product. After multiple use (10+ dives) you can replace a decal by peeling it off cleanly, leaving little, if any, adhesive residue.