Having a Plan B may be wise, but... it also may complicate things for some people. Especially if it has multiple steps. Here's why:
Regardless of who they are, & what their training is/was. When people are trapped underwater, or just under duress in the water. And, or, they're disoriented. A large percentage of them simply cannot perform simple, let alone complex tasks. Including using Spare Air bottles, or other tools.
Let alone stopping, & thinking clearly enough to go & find such items.
This happens in warm, clear water, with good lighting
. In environments where people "know" that they are "safe". And that there are rescue
divers only feet away.
It's a biological reflex, which in some people simply cannot be unwired. And I saw it plenty, both in Navy
, & during Pilot/Air Crew Escape Training. Which is given to all those who were candidates to work in over water aircraft.
Though I cannot recall
the percentages of those who consistently freak out in such situations. However, it isn't low, by any means.
When it hits people, they can't think or function, regardless of how you try to help them. Even when you forcibly try to give them an air source in such a situation. Nor sometimes will they share/relinquish it, if you can get them to take it.
So I don't know if giving people several things to try & think their way through in such an emergency
would be especially helpful.
Another option would be to put both; a Crowbar, & a 3lb Shorty Sledge Hammer, near each hatch
. After painting both with neon paint
, plus putting some SOLAS reflective tape on them. And attaching lanyards to both.
That way, people have a definitive, KISS way to get out, via the hatch
. As opposed to having to stop, chill out, & shift into Frogman mode, if the hatch is jammed.
If you do go the Spare Air route
. I'd suggest fitting the Spare Air Bottles with a semi-flexible, webbing grip strap. One that's aligned along the bottle's primary gripping axis.
That way the units are Much easier to hold onto, without dropping them. And, also add a lanyard with a carabiner on them too. So that once you're outside, the bottles don't get lost
. In case you need go go back inside for something, or someone.
Plus, make sure that next to each Air Bottle you have;
- a powerful, Waterproof Flashlight with a wrist lanyard, plus a Chem Light or three.
- a Sharp, Serrated, folding Rigging
Knife (two's better) with a lanyard, & sheath.
- a Dive Mask.
Especially considering that there Will be Oil
(& other caustic agents) in the water. And it really burns your eyes, thus wrecking your vision.
Plus, the ship's batteries may be producing (chlorine) gas, & leaking it into the air pockets inside of the boat. Again, screwing up your vision, amongst other things.
And, of course, there will be debris & lines to navigate one's way though (BTDT). So the mask will definitely help with that.
Also, put all of the tools onto a wide, easy to adjust, webbing belt. Stiffened for a good portion of it's circumference with Scuba
webbing. And include pouches on it for the mask, & the Spare Air bottle too.
Plus, it would make sense to have these tools next to each hatch, regardless of whether or not you decide to install the Spare Air bottles in the boat.