A few days ago, I was finishing a great deep dive with my favorite buddy. Then we met one of the divers of our boat at -5 m waiting the end of his deco stop.
I looked at him and asked him where are the other three members of his group.
He beckons me that they are back on the boat. He shows me that he still had some minutes to complete his deco stop.
Unbelievable ! I remain speechless (no wonder under the water 😉) and with my buddy we decided to make our deco stop and wait for him.
Obviously, out of question for us to abandon a diver alone under water.
When we finished the dive, we debriefed to find out what had happened. The diver had a computer that could not be adjusted to NITROX. But all the group made a dive with this gas. Of course, his dive computer set to air penalized him heavily for deco stop. The other divers decided to go back on the boat as their dive computer were cleared. He told us, however, that all the divers of the group had planned this way of operation.
NEVER DO THAT !!!
NEVER AGREE TO STAY ALONE AT THE END OF THE DIVE !!!
This is dangerous and unacceptable during the deco stop 😱
Even if the deco stops are shallow, this does not mean that there is no risk. The diver may, for example, have an alternobaric vertigo. Some discomfort (cardiac, vagal, …) or due to decompression, panic for a lot of different reasons. Lack of air, muscular or digestive cramp, stress of being alone, a barotrauma specific to the ascent. Many cases where a help of a buddy or diving companion can prove really useful or vital.
Some people tend to forget it. However, the very notion of buddy implies that the divers do their dive together from the beginning till the end.
And the deco stop is still diving!
Each member of the group must take care of his companions. Even if it is not always fun to wait very long minutes at the end of the dive. And this, whatever the level of training.
Diving is a wonderful leisure that allows, besides underwater discoveries, beautiful encounters and sincere friendships. However, it should be borne in mind that divers who are with you during aquatic explorations or yourself may someday need help.
Be vigilant and attentive to each other for years of diving with pleasure and safety.
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