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Decompression diving

Diver support station

Where decompression diving is taking place the employer/self-employed person should ensure there is a diver surface support station.

The following equipment should be available from this station:

  • emergency breathing gas positioned for use during decompression
  • a device for the purpose of controlling position and maintaining ascent rate during decompression (e.g. an ascent line)
  • a copy of each dive team's dive plan
  • a copy of each diver's calculated gas consumption requirements for the dive, showing adequate gas supplies to safely complete the required dive profile without the use of the diver's redundant gas system.

The employer/self-employed person should ensure that at all times divers are in the water that there is on the surface:

  • a person trained and competent in the operation of all emergency equipment on the diver surface support station
  • a person who is fully aware of the dive plan for each dive team
  • a person capable of controlling the vessel (if the station is a boat)
  • the required number of support personnel based on the degree of risk, including the maximum number of divers in the water at any time, the prevailing conditions, the location and nature of the dive site and the level of experience of divers
  • an alternate ascent system and a redundant gas system for all divers undertaking decompression diving.

Maximum exposure

Divers must not to be exposed to:

  • oxygen in the mixture being breathed at any time in excess of a partial pressure of 1.6 bar
  • nitrogen in the mixture being breathed at any time in excess of a partial pressure of 5.0 bar while diving.

Find out more about decompression diving qualifications and equipment for decompression diving.