The British Diving Safety Group (BDSG), which includes representatives of training agencies, the UKDMC, HSE, MCA and various trade bodies, has urged all divers to work their way back into diving “in a gentle manner”. It advocates shallow, progressive shore-diving subject to devolved government guidelines.
According to the BDSG, diving in Scotland is now permissible – although national governing body ScotSAC, a member of the group, has fallen short of advocating any immediate resumption. It points out that Scottish government guidance remains to stay at home and that only travel within around five miles is permitted for outdoor leisure. It also emphasises the risk of diverting emergency services or invalidating insurance cover in the event of an incident.
Meanwhile, no hanging about will be the guidance to divers as inland dive-sites around the UK prepare to reopen under the slogan: “Arrive, Dive, Leave”.
This implies that only single dives might be allowed initially, following discussion of effective procedures for safe diving at a recent meeting of UK Inland Dive Sites. UKIDS says that elements to be considered by site operators include control of diver numbers, parking, booking-in, sharing facilities, kitting-up and social distancing.
Inland sites are expected to be operating at less than maximum capacity, and to re-open at their own pace only once satisfied that their individual site logistics, social-distancing and infection-control measures are adequate.