See Shell App and the Illegal Tortoiseshell Trade

BEAUTIFUL NECKLACES, BRACELETS, EARRINGS, and other items with elaborate brown and amber patterns adorn the shelves of shops and tourist markets worldwide. They might seem like the perfect souvenirs of your latest dive trip. These items, often called tortoiseshell, may be made from the colorful plates, called scutes, covering the shells of hawksbill sea turtles […]

DAN Dispatch: DAN Research Update

AS DIVERS JUMP INTO ANOTHER BUSY DIVE SEASON, DAN Research is also gearing up to advance our understanding of dive science and medicine. Here is a quick introduction to two flagship studies and information on how you can contribute to diving research and safety. Bubbles forming in the body after a dive can cause decompression […]

Preserving History: Leslie Leaney

LESLIE LEANEY IS RENOWNED for his dive history research and preservation. He has done this work through organizations such as the Cayman Islands’ International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame (where he has been the executive director for nearly 20 years), the Commercial Diving Hall of Fame, the Academy of Underwater Arts and Sciences, the Santa […]

Not in Denial

HAVING DONE THOUSANDS OF DIVES since I started in 1964, primarily off the coast of North Carolina, the shipwrecks and dive profiles there are familiar. Overall conditions couldn’t have been much better on this particular day — calm, clear seas with barely a current. We planned on two reverse profile decompression dives at an offshore […]

diver with a school of fish

Freediving: Seeking and Finding Our Limits

WHEN YOU GROW UP IN THE FLORIDA KEYS, the Atlantic Ocean is your backyard and the Gulf of Mexico is the front — or as the locals say, the ocean and the bay. Fins are your enclosed footwear, and your mask and snorkel dangle from your elbow after school or on weekends. You never know […]

Diving After Brain Surgery

I RECENTLY UNDERWENT BRAIN SURGERY. The surgery was successful, but now part of my skull has been replaced with mesh. My neurosurgeon is brilliant but does not know how the surgery may affect my diving. Am I still able to dive? Should I limit myself to a certain depth, or should I only snorkel? While […]

Sherri Ferguson

SHERRI FERGUSON, MSC, IS THE LAB MANAGER at Simon Fraser University’s hyperbaric chamber, located at an altitude of 1,200 feet on Burnaby Mountain in the outskirts of Vancouver, Canada. She is a scientist working in aerospace and dive research, an experienced recreational, technical, and commercial diver, and a mother. How did you get into diving? […]

Emergency Oxygen

IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL, WARM SATURDAY IN THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST. We were conducting two checkout dives for an advanced open-water course at a popular dive site in Puget Sound. I had just gotten some divers out of the water, and we were debriefing onshore as divers from a basic open-water class exited the water with […]

Teaching Rescue: Am I Qualified?

WHEN ASKED TO DESCRIBE THEIR FAVORITE COURSE, many divers will discuss the challenges and triumphs they experienced during their rescue class. Instructors often describe rescue as the most rewarding course they teach. It is often the first course in which divers begin thinking about others more than themselves, so it’s little surprise that it stands […]

Oxygen Cleaning of Dive Gear: A Two-Part Series

IN THE PREVIOUS ARTICLE, we settled on the recommendation that equipment used to control any breathing gas mix containing 25 percent oxygen and above at typical scuba cylinder pressures should be designed and considered suitable for oxygen use. Possible debates aside, we’ll examine what oxygen cleaning means. How often should gear be oxygen cleaned, and […]

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