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Old 14-07-2010, 18:58   #16
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I got open water certified by Dive Safari's in Sint. Maarten 6 weeks ago. On our deep water dive, they threw the anchor out on the side of the reef and allowed the chain to saw across the reef top. When we where done I mentioned this to the instructor and he said they needed to work on that. They destroyed more reef that day then 10 cruisers would because they had to be right on top of it. And they do this EVERY DAY.

I think you can check noonsite for each countries regulations.

My boat came with a Bauer II Junior and two compete scuba sets. I've added to it and now have a fairly equipped dive setup. I'll use it as a dive boat in two weeks and am looking forward to it.
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Old 14-07-2010, 20:29   #17
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having sailed the bahamas and met with a few cruisers with compressors and dive gear (ocean explorer) for one, i would say dive all you want.just dont step on toes.if your just going out for your own personal dive, even in a place that doesnt allow it, the most you will get is a warning.they are very friendly.as for stepping on toes.dont take tourists, dont spear fish with a tank, dont maul lobsters....and you can dive wherever.just pay a bit of respect, and even if your breaking the law, they will respect you.
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Old 15-07-2010, 04:05   #18
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Hubby and I are in the process of closing down our Dive Centre, so that we can get shot of our ties.

A few years ago, this country had an influx of (mostly local) instructors from another agency. During the following few years, we had an influx of certified divers who couldn't dive - some who had never even been to the sea! We insisted on seeing all new divers in the pool first - we refused to allow anyone on our boats who refused to do a pool check dive, things were so bad.

Imagine if these divers (and mostly, they do not know they are bad divers) were allowed out to play by themselves???

It would make sense to allow only professional divers to dive independently. That would help to protect the reefs and divers, and encourage less experienced divers who want to dive independently to seek out further training and experience.

But, once you start making exceptions, where do you draw the line?
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Old 15-07-2010, 06:02   #19
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It would make sense to allow only professional divers to dive independently. That would help to protect the reefs and divers, and encourage less experienced divers who want to dive independently to seek out further training and experience.

But, once you start making exceptions, where do you draw the line?
We allow people to fly, drive, sail, motor, and hang glide without any professional with them and all of those can cause more harm to the environment and others then diving alone so I agree drawing the line at this wouldn't be wise.

Jim
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Old 15-07-2010, 06:26   #20
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St. Barths enforces the restriction that one can only dive with their dive shops. Tank fills are also not done.
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Old 15-07-2010, 06:39   #21
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as for stepping on toes.dont take tourists, dont spear fish with a tank, dont maul lobsters....and you can dive wherever.just pay a bit of respect, and even if your breaking the law, they will respect you.
With the exception of family or friends who come to visit, I'd never a take tourist diving...well unless she's cute. Even then, I'd maybe just do a few dives with one of the shops to play it safe...with family/friends that is, not with the cute tourist girl.

Maul lobsters? Hell no, unless throwing them in a pot is considered mauling?
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Old 15-07-2010, 06:43   #22
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We allow people to fly, drive, sail, motor, and hang glide without any professional with them and all of those can cause more harm to the environment and others then diving alone so I agree drawing the line at this wouldn't be wise.

Jim
Exactly, and why I think at least in most locations, it's more so from the shops complaining, not about the environment. Probably not even about the money as much as being annoyed finding a private boat tied to a mooring when they show up to dive the same spot.
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Old 15-07-2010, 06:57   #23
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Hubby and I are in the process of closing down our Dive Centre, so that we can get shot of our ties.

Imagine if these divers (and mostly, they do not know they are bad divers) were allowed out to play by themselves???

It would make sense to allow only professional divers to dive independently. That would help to protect the reefs and divers, and encourage less experienced divers who want to dive independently to seek out further training and experience.
I'd say the odds of those types of divers to be cruising on their own boat with tanks and a compressor is pretty slim.

Professional doesn't necessarily mean experience. If you're going to go that route how about only divers with tech certs and/or solo diving cards can dive? PADI's requirements (18 years old, certified diver for at least 6 months, and 100 dives before taking the exam). Not trying to discredit the training or experience, but plenty of newbies get bit by the bug and fly from open water to instructor. So by your logic, you potentially be letting 19 year olds, who've been diving for barely a year do private diving based on a card over people with trimix, full cave, solo, CCR, and even just people who've been diving for years.
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Old 15-07-2010, 07:00   #24
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I got open water certified by Dive Safari's in Sint. Maarten 6 weeks ago. On our deep water dive, they threw the anchor out on the side of the reef and allowed the chain to saw across the reef top. When we where done I mentioned this to the instructor and he said they needed to work on that. They destroyed more reef that day then 10 cruisers would because they had to be right on top of it. And they do this EVERY DAY.

I think you can check noonsite for each countries regulations.

My boat came with a Bauer II Junior and two compete scuba sets. I've added to it and now have a fairly equipped dive setup. I'll use it as a dive boat in two weeks and am looking forward to it.

If you're still in the leewards, try Saba....great diving. And if you want to use a shop, I personally like SeaSaba (in Windwardside).

And no worries about anchoring on a reef: There are about 100 moorings around the island for dive boats (the entire island is a marine park).
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Old 15-07-2010, 07:31   #25
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If you're still in the leewards, try Saba....great diving. And if you want to use a shop, I personally like SeaSaba (in Windwardside).

And no worries about anchoring on a reef: There are about 100 moorings around the island for dive boats (the entire island is a marine park).
I was at Saba last year. I think they only have 10 mooring balls on the lee side of the island and anchoring is not allowed. The dive moorings are for professional dive operators only and they only allow diving with professionals. Saba is one beautiful island at night. It is unreal how the land rises so straight up from the sea. Unfortunately, it is really difficult to get on the island due to surge.

Has anyone in the States ever wondered how you can justify a law mandating seatbelt use when your passed by a motorcycle rider without a helmut? Laws that are designed to limit our freedom when we are the only person who would be hurt I can't support. Of course every dive operator would love to have it mandated that you can't dive without a professional. Personally, I think that is BS.
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Old 15-07-2010, 08:10   #26
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Originally Posted by Aaza Dana View Post

Imagine if these divers (and mostly, they do not know they are bad divers) were allowed out to play by themselves???

It would make sense to allow only professional divers to dive independently. That would help to protect the reefs and divers, and encourage less experienced divers who want to dive independently to seek out further training and experience.

But, once you start making exceptions, where do you draw the line?
I have been a certified diver for 42 years. I take great exception to the proposition that I need supervision from these so called professionals. About half of the ones I have dived with probably would not have passed my original certification course. My daughter got open water certified by PADI. I was shocked at the low quality of the training, so I somewhat see your point. My son got YMCA certified. While not quite as demanding as my course it was much more demanding than the PADI course. My training was YMCA and NASDS, neither of which certify divers any more, but our level of training was several orders of magnitude more challenging. Not everyone passed the course, but with PADI the attitude is that anyone should be able to pass the open water course. It would not do to chase away customers by failing the incompetent.

I have done many so called supervised dives from dive shops and have not found one of them a good diving experience. Virtually all of them have been what I call swim through dives where the instructor takes everyone deep and swims at maximum speed. There is virtually no opportunity for anything but the most gross underwater photography or observation. It's kind of like going to the rocky mountains and only looking at them from 20 miles away. What it does do is minimize the bottom time and the amount of time the "professionals" have to bother with the clients. My experience is that these dive masters go to the same place and do the same thing every day. Even the best dive spot probably looses its facination the hundreth time you've seen it, so their bored and just want to get it overwith as fast as they can and get their money.

I don't have a problem with Islands that cater to mass tourism passing law that restrict diving to supervised diving. I don't plan on going to a mass tourism place anyway. If the others pass such laws I'll not be spending my money in their country either, not that they care.
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Old 15-07-2010, 08:29   #27
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...even if your breaking the law, they will respect you.
Until some bureaucrat happens to have a bad day and decides to take it out on you. Do you REALLY want to risk spending time in a foreign jail just because most of the time they're friendly? Even if you do, I have to say that I would NEVER give someone else the advice to just ignore the laws in a foreign country.

For others reading this, if you get arrested in St. Lucia for diving without a licensed guide, and you tell them, "But they told me on Cruisers Forum that you were friendly and wouldn't really care!", trust me, they are NOT going to be impressed.

As for how they can regulate this sort of thing, easy--they pass a law, they enforce it. It's their country, they can do what they want. How effectively they can enforce it is another question, but that again raises the issue of whether or not you really want to take the risk of breaking the law and ending up in a foreign jail.
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Old 15-07-2010, 08:30   #28
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Imagine if these divers (and mostly, they do not know they are bad divers) were allowed out to play by themselves???
Darwin in action. Soon they wouldn't be a problem anymore. Honestly, I don't see the issue.
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Old 15-07-2010, 09:07   #29
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This is an aside. Not related to the Caribbean at all and just for some folks how may be reading this wondering about the rest of the world.

There are some weird rules we have bumped into re scuba and even snorkeling so its more than just the Caribbean.

Turkey is a SCUBA no-no as they believe you will take some water born antiquity. Like a piece of rock carved 2,000 years ago instead of a bit of rock god carved 4 billion years ago.

Also some harbours in militaristic parts of the world wont let you jump in the water to clean the prop! Oman was a cracker for that one! They think anyone with bright pink flippers and a brighter pink bikini is not really a Nicolle but an Israeli invasion!

Beware!
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Old 15-07-2010, 09:14   #30
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I have been a certified diver for 42 years. I take great exception to the proposition that I need supervision from these so called professionals. About half of the ones I have dived with probably would not have passed my original certification course.

I agree entirely. But how to distinguish between qualifications and experience? Often, divers with high level qualifications are experienced. Not always.

On the other hand, there are many experienced divers who don't collect cards. They are usually the best divers, in fact. But how do we know who they are? That's why a line can't really be drawn, and unfortunately we all suffer because of the few bloomin' idiots who don't know their limits.
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