Wednesday, June 23, 2010
ERDI REMINDS DIVE PROFESSIONALS TO BEWARE OF POLLUTION RISKS
More SDI/TDI/ERDI news
More news from the Training-Education category
Deephorizon Disaster puts proper contaminated water training on everyone’s mind!
Released on: 6/22/2010
Emergency Response Diving International (ERDi), a US-based organization that provides training for Police, Fire and Rescue dive teams around the world is spearheading a dive-industry push to promote accurate “ awareness” information about dive conditions in the Gulf of Mexico.
At issue is the broad speculation that the prime dive sites in the region have been inundated with oil from the Deephorizon disaster. “This is clearly not the case,” explained ERDi spokesperson Nestor Palmero. “We have reports updated daily that conditions at popular sites such as the Oriskany (off Pensacola) and down the Gulf Coast of Florida as far as Key West are currently unaffected by the oil spill.
“As of this morning, there were no oil slick sightings from any of the dive operators or the US Coast Guard in those areas.”
Palmero, a Florida resident and a member of the Board of Directors for ERDi and its sister training agencies did, however, caution sport and technical divers not to conduct dives directly in oil residue originating from the Deephorizon disaster. He said he was shocked to see footage recently of a newsman making dives directly in oil contamination near the disaster site in the Gulf of Mexico.
Palmero pointed out that the newsman and his buddy conducted their dives in standard sport diving gear without any protection from the chemical toxins contained in crude oil. “This is strictly against all conventions and sends a very mixed message to the diving community and the worse of all to the public at large,” Palmero said.
Palmero said that oil contaminated water is extremely hazardous and can cause many health issues including damage to the respiratory tract and central nervous system. “Conducting dives at ANY depth or even surface swimming directly in the residue from this spill without the appropriate training, gear and post-dive procedures WILL result in injury and could potentially be a life-changing experience,” he stated.
ERDI recently funded a $194,000 educational grant to raise awareness of the rigors of contaminated water diving among the Public Safety Diving community in North America. “We launched theawareness drive on Contaminated Water Ops a few weeks prior to the Deepwater Horizon Disaster,” he said, “because police, firefighters and other water rescue teams are routinely exposed to bio-hazards and chemical contaminates when conducting evidence recoveries and other underwater work. These men and women have no option but to dive in the most appauling conditions because their work and responsibilities demands that of them. Out of respect for their dedication, the highly specialized training they have undertaken, and for the good of the dive community at large, we are hoping that sport and technical divers stay on the thouands upon thousands of national dive sites unaffected by the spill and leave diving in contaminated water to the professionals who have the training and specialized equipment to do so.”
Nestor Palmero is a dive industry veteran with more than 30 years in the field and a wide variety of educational background both in diving and the business field. Almost two decades of his dive training experience was gained while Training Officer to a very active Sherrifs Dive Team in Floridas Treasure Coast. He currently servers on the BoD for International Training the parent organization to ERDi. Nestor can be contacted via e-mail Nestor.Palmero@tdisdi.com or 888-778-9073 ext 213.