Diving Incident Reports

Non-functioning BCD and too much weight sinks diver

Over weighted diver sinks rapidly and could not stabilize because of disconnected hose on BCD.

REPORTED STORY

This was several years ago, I'd just been certified as a Nitrox diver. My BC was last used a few months prior. I geared up for our first dive and probably was over weighted, but when I hit the water I rocketed down to the bottom and thank God that there was a ledge at 124'. On Nitrox, the max depth is 124'.

My mistake? I did not ditch my weight belt when my BCD would not inflate.
I struggled through the dive. While there were other divers in the water, I could not find my buddy. None the other divers could see that I was struggling. I have to say that I feel totally responsible because I did not test my BCD before entering the water. I was to meet my buddy on the anchor line, but since I did a giant stride off the back of the boat, it was straight down from there. Once I did find my buddy, he took some of the weight off my belt, but I still struggled. Once on the boat, I sat out the next dive. My BCD was repaired where the hose was disconnected and I was able to dive the next day without incident.

COMMENT

The diver is an experienced diver who travels and dives multiple times a year. The two mistakes she learned from this incident was that: one, she did not do a proper pre-dive check of her equipment thus overlooked the BC hose that became disconnected from the previous trip; and second, she did not drop her weights when she started sinking.

edited by Jeanette Moore