>unrelated to diving.
>Emergency action plans (EAPs) are essential tools for dive professionals and dive businesses. These plans typically provide information needed in case a dive accident occurs, although this consideration is usually limited to traditional diving activities or expected problems. Comprehensive EAPs must address a variety of risk areas, and few people understand what goes into identifying, compiling, reviewing and qualifying a truly effective EAP.
>This article is the first in a series that will cover the essentials of planning an effective and practical emergency procedure to help mitigate dive-industry-related incidents. First we'll consider where emergencies are likely to occur.
>The risks vary by dive center, dive professional and area of operation, so we need a careful analysis to identify the real issues. Here is at least a partial list of possible risks to help identify areas of concern.
- At the dive center: fires; explosions of high-pressure cylinders, gas tanks or containers of hazardous fluids; contact with chemicals or other hazardous materials; injuries from electrocution; social unrest or other involvement with aggressive people
- At the pool and training areas: exposure to hazardous substances (such as chlorine); medical emergencies (including from preexisting health problems); injuries (from slipping, diving, falling or lifting heavy objects); drowning
- While diving: traumatic injuries from propellers, ladders, slipping, diving or heavy objects, for example; encounters with hazardous marine life; lost divers; drowning; medical emergencies due to health conditions; entry and exit hazards associated with rocky shores or difficult-to-access caves or pools
- During transportation (on land or on the water): fire; inclement weather; capsizing; loss or incapacitation of people; launch accidents; road accidents; hijacking of a vessel or vehicle
- a lost, abducted or wounded guest
- unacceptable or aggressive behavior by a guest, staff member or visitor
- sudden ill health or a medical emergency
- criminal activity or arrest, death or homicide involving a guest or staff member
>By illustrating these hazards and their potential locations, we hope to inspire dive businesses and self-employed dive professionals to think through their EAPs in greater depth.
>There will always be risks, but with better knowledge, understanding and preparedness we can reduce uncertainty and better contain the consequences of the hazards we will eventually face.
>© Alert Diver — Q4 Fall 2017