Human ignorance in wreck diving penetrations.

A question raised up over the time: why regular recreational diver (not trained for overhead environment) are willing to do a wreck penetration, even a light one, but are aware of cave penetration risks therefore they don’t do it? Why wreck is seen as a non-dangerous penetration but cavern, caves & flooded mines – yes?

Is something to do with the basic training & diving education? With the group divers attitude he’s diving with? With social media influence? With his own perspective over the risks assessment?

A penetration in an overhead environment remains a penetration. Does not matter that is cave, cavern, wreck, flooded mine etc. There is a physical barrier (and maybe a virtual barrier too) which does not allow the diver to direct access the surface.

A bad combination of various factors can turn a fun dives into a tragedy: depth, distance of penetration, equipment configuration, gasses used (narcosis & oxygen toxicity), diving techniques (finning, buoyancy and trim), divers skills, penetration space available for moving in-out and around, wreck’s condition [related to other various factors: wreck’s age, depth – water salinity, weather influence (storms, currents, tides etc), diver’s direct influence etc)], wreck familiarization and familiarization with a ship’s construction overall/in general, material of construction (wood, iron etc)…  and the list can go on.

Each overhead environment has its own specific factors which must be analyzed and assessed non-stop before and during the dive.

So, remains the question remains in the air: what makes the divers think that a wreck penetration is less dangerous then any other overhead diving environment?



Directional & Non-directional Markers

Most of the times, wrongly promoted as “CAVE” markers (only), those little pieces of diving tool are very important for WRECK diving as well, because in fact, are designed for OVERHEAD ENVIRONMENT DIVING!

So, whatever penetration is made, CAVES or WRECKS, the markers are there to be used accordingly, as per your training  protocols. Don’t used them without a proper training, this could lead in miscommunication or even fatal accidents of you, your buddy team or other participants in diving activities in that area!

A (vary) basic information about markers can be found here on  TDI blog.