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Check Lists

Basic Check Lists Used for Diving and Dive Trips

by Terry Sovil

A checklist is a type of aid that will help to reduce risk and increase enjoyment on your dive trips. Human memory isn't always the best. It's easy to overlook an item. A checklist makes this much easier. I've been a dive checklist user for many years of diving. They help to ensure a completeness test. Here we present several different types of checklists to help you plan your dives and then dive your plans!

Trip Checklist - Local or Vacation
Equipment Checklist
First Aid Kit Checklist
Pre-Dive Checklist
Spare Parts Kit Checklist

Trip Checklist - Local or Vacation

Whether making a local dive or planning a trip to a remote island, a Trip Checklist can help you plan without forgetting something critical.

  • Select destination
    • If local, have an alternate site, a Plan "B", if conditions are bad
  • Check Dive Operator
  • Prices, Schedules, # of dives, group size
  • Dive Buddy and arrangements
  • Transportation to dive site
  • Lodging and meals
  • Weather (clothing needs)
  • Equipment - Air fills
  • Proof of Experience?
  • Certification Card
  • Payment options
  • Raincheck policies
  • Confirmation procedures
  • Inoculations required?
  • Passport/Visa/Birth Certificate
  • Local customs/laws (bringing fruits, alcohol)
  • Currency exchange
  • Credit cards accepted
  • Notify Credit card Company of your trip
  • Airline reservations
  • Lodging/Meal Reservations
  • Transportation Reservations
  • Emergency Medical Treatment options / DAN Membership?
  • Confirmation of all reservations
  • Airline Return Confirmation
  • Distribute Itinerary & Phone Numbers to family/friends

Equipment Checklist

Diving is an equipment intensive sport. There are a lot of things to remember. You can adjust this list and add things to it depending on your needs. Preparation for an ice dive involves way more tools than a dive from a resort in Bonaire"

  • Mask
  • Fins
  • Snorkel
  • Dive Computer
  • Regulator/Octopus/SPG/Depth Gauges/Compass
  • BCD
  • Boots
  • Gloves
  • Knife
  • Lights / Strobe
  • Whistle
  • Watch
  • Wetsuit
  • Camera
  • Swimsuit
  • Towel
  • Certification Card
  • Logbook
  • Tanks
  • Weight and Belt
  • Dive Flag, Surface Marker Buoy, Float and line
  • Emergency Equipment
    • Oxygen
    • First Aid Kit
    • Local Contact Numbers

First Aid Kit

Safety is a big issue when you are diving and being able to respond to emergencies and accidents is important. The best way to prepare is to complete a PADI Rescue Diving Course. This, along with Emergency First Aid, prepares you to better help yourself and allows you to reach out to help another. It's never a bad idea to have a nice first aid kit but even better if YOU are prepared to use it! This does not have to be a huge box. A typical larger size dry box will hold most all of this!

  • Waterproof Dry Box or Bag
  • First Aid Manual
  • DAN or PADI Rescue Emergency Handbook / Flow Chart
  • Emergency Telephone Numbers
  • Roll Bandage
  • Triangular Bandage
  • Large Square Gauze Pads
  • Adhesive Bandages
  • Adhesive Tape
  • Stretch Band for Securing Pads
  • Butterfly closures
  • Antiseptic towelettes
  • Alcohol Solution (70%)
  • Ammonia Solution
  • Antiseptic Lotion/Spray
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Soap
  • Aspirin
  • Acetaminophen (500 mg
  • Meat Tenderizer
  • Baking Soda
  • Sun Screen
  • Nasal Decongestant
  • Motion Sickness Medicine
  • Splints
  • Prescription Meds
  • Tweezers - Splinter picker
  • Scissors
  • Single Edge Razor Blade
  • Small Folding Knife
  • Pair nitrile gloves
  • Fingertip bandages
  • Cloth tape, 1" roll
  • Bio barrier face shield

Pre-Dive Checklist

Safety is a big issue when you are diving. It's important that you evaluate yourself in preparing for a dive. Are the conditions something you can handle. Have you made a surf entry before? Are you ready? Are condiditons safe?

  • Evaluate Personal Readiness
  • Evaluate Dive Conditions
  • Make a Go/No-Go Decision
  • Divemaster Briefing
  • Dive Plan / Buddy Briefing
  • Dive Objective
  • Entry/Exit Points - Alternatives
  • Dive Time, Navigation/Direction, Air
  • Calculate your "Turning Point"
  • Communications
  • Separation Procedures
  • Equipment
  • Accessories (lights, camera, knife, pocket mask)
  • Exposure Suit
  • Booties
  • Gloves
  • Hood
  • Defog mask
  • PADI Pre-Dive Safety Check and Slogan "BWRAF"
    • Begin - Buoyancy Compensator Connected to air/working
    • With - Weight Belt on
    • Review - Releases (BCD, weights) are visible and not obstructed
    • And - Air - Check pressure gauge and tank valve on full
    • Friend - Final OK

Spare Parts Kit Checklist

Dives have been called off due to a fin strap or mask strap breaking. You may be sitting out a dive while everyone else gets to see the manta ray, spotted eagle ray or a shark. This is a pretty elaborate list but you can buy simple kits that have all of the basics, items above the ~~~~ line.

  • Mask Strap
  • Fin Strap
  • Snorkel Keeper
  • O-Rings
  • Batteries
  • Tools
  • Small Knife
  • Screw drivers
  • Wrench
  • Pliers
  • Hex Keys
  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~
  • Weight Belt
  • Extra Weights
  • BC Attachment Clips
  • Regulator Port Plug
  • Neoprene Cement & Patch Kit
  • Velcro Leg Strap
  • Silicone Grease
  • Needles and thread
  • Waterproof tape (Rescue Tape!)
  • Super Glue
  • Rubber Bands
  • Tie Wraps and Twist Ties
  • Nylon Line

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