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OOA Frequency

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba' started by Diver Dennis, Dec 24, 2006.

  1. Diver Dennis

    Diver Dennis Contributor

    Yes mdb, I think it can. Thanks everyone for the straight forward posts so far. I see the divers involved in the incidents so far have kept a level head and there has been no panic.

    I'll repeat the one I saw where there was panic.
    A couple of months ago I was with a group of divers in Indonesia. We were coming up a long slope on a shore dive, in a loose group, and were at about 25'. I did not have a buddy but some others did. I was behind someone about 50' or so when I saw another diver, not his buddy, come up behind him swimming fast. She grabbed his octo from behind and tried to take a breath. We don't think she purged it and got a mouth full of water. She was truly OOA and let go of the octo and took off for the surface. The octo got caught on her cameras and she proceeded to drag him up. I could hear him yelling through his reg, struggling to pull her down and/or free himself. Because she was quite athletic and panicked, he was going up with her until the octo finally pulled free and she made it the rest of the way to the surface.

    I watched the whole thing and it was amazing how fast it happened. She was on her way up almost before he realized what was happening and certainly before he could react to help her. I started to swim forward but there was no way I could get there in time, I didn't really know what was happening until I saw her bolt anyway. I swam up to him and we slowly ascended to make sure she was OK. She was fine but this was not a CESA, she was getting to the top as fast as she could. Luckily dragging up the other diver slowed her down. This was the type of person who, topside you would never think of as a diver that would panic.
  2. just havin funn

    just havin funn Guest

    It happened to me when at 85 ft when i first started diving doubles one valve was turned off!! I Shir learned a lesson about solo diving.You can be shir i know how my reg work know. That was 5years ago but i still rember like it was yesterday.
    It is very important to know your equipment very well and practice every dive.
  3. captain

    captain Captain

    Never had one or been involved with one or even saw one in 45 years. But I very very seldom dive with inexperienced divers. Never had any O ring failures either other than of my own doing by not having the regulator correctly aligned when I turned on the valve.
  4. Alex777

    Alex777 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Britannia, Grand Cayman
    I have had 3 buddies experience a sudden OOA emergency (although I've never had the pleasure myself):

    1) I was at 110 feet on the N Wall on Grand Cayman. My buddy, an experienced diver (1000+ dives), was about 8 - 10 feet directly above me when she suddenly flashed me the OOA sign about 12 minutes into the dive. I will never forget my reaction - I thought she was kidding! I have no idea why (probably a bit narced), and I was very embarrassed about it later. She flashed the OOA sign again, eyes starting to bulge and getting close to panic. I rocketed up to her ("Ahhing" to keep my airway open) and thrust my octopus at her. Then, we ascended slowly and did a safety stop. We believe the OOA situation was caused by rust entering the valve stem, but cannot prove it because the dive shop refused to open the tank in our presence.

    2) An instabuddy I was paired with, an Instructor (he said), rushed over and grabbed my octopus at 50 feet about 25 minutes into the dive. Back on the boat, he avoided discussing the incident. Guess he just breathed down the tank. :shakehead

    3) Another instabuddy flashed me an OOA sign at 60 feet about 40 minutes into the dive. I handed him the octopus and we ascended by the book. Like everything else, handling OOA emergencies becomes a bit easier with practice. However, I now carry a 19 cf pony bottle which I can hand off if necessary, in addition to my octopus. :wink:
  5. Kevrumbo

    Kevrumbo Banned

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: South Santa Monica Bay/Los Angeles California, USA
    Cheap O-ring extruded resulting in catastrophic gas loss at 15m deep, for my Dive Master on an Indonesian Liveaboard Trip that I've just now come home from (Thank God I switched back to a DIN tank valve the day before --all the A-clamp tank valves had "new" O-rings of suspect quality:11:).

    No problem: calmly donated my Long Hose Primary, shut down his valve, showed my SPG with 160bar remaining --and decided to continue the rest of the dive on the reef, albeit much shallower at 10-12m deep. I had completed an intensive Tech Wreck Class the week before in the Philippines, so this "real-life OOG occurrence" seemingly came off as nothing more than a well practiced Drill for me. . .
  6. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many. Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    I had a freeflow that emptied my tank before I got to the surface. We should have shut the valve off, since I had gone on a buddy's long hose the minute we realized the free-flow wasn't something we could get stopped at depth, but for some reason, the instructor waved my buddy off when he went to do that. I was never even particularly upset about it, because I always had a reliable air source, but the ascent wasn't as well controlled as it could have been because I couldn't see anything but bubbles, and the incredible noise had me a bit rattled. I'd do better today.
  7. WVDiver

    WVDiver Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Podunk, WV
    Have never been anywhere near one yet. I hope my luck holds out a while longer. I figure if you dive long enough someone around you will have an OOA situation. Equipment can fail in scuba as in any other place but usually it is diver error. Too many people in the world today lack the abilites to manage themselves much less their air.
  8. OE2X

    OE2X *** ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives:
    Not a single OOA in thirty years of diving, but I have done many, many, many drills at all depths. I've also put my buddies on my long hose for air shares to conserve their supply on numerous occasions.
    I once came close to going OOA myself, but realized that my valve wasn't open all the way. Ascended 10' and had my buddy open my valve. We then continued on the dive.
  9. BCSGratefulDiver

    BCSGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: On the Fun Side of Trump's Wall
    Two OOA situations when I was a fairly new diver ... in both cases I was the donor, and in both cases my dive buddy ran out of air because I screwed up making a dive plan that put us too deep for the gas supply she was carrying ... and she knew even less about gas management and dive planning than I did.

    Both turned out OK ... thank God ... and eventually I learned something about gas management.

    I have since not been involved in any OOA's ... but have been the donor in a few LOA situations ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
  10. Kevrumbo

    Kevrumbo Banned

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: South Santa Monica Bay/Los Angeles California, USA
    I had an unfixable freeflow on single tank at 6m deep in Cozumel this past August, with my dive buddy nowhere in sight: had to feather the tank valve to complete a relatively nominal MDL ascent.

    Lesson learned Lynne --that is usable gas and you should try to conserve it by shutting it down initially if you can (i.e. you can even attempt to "feather & sip" any remaining breathing gas from the tank directly from the valve itself as a last resort measure). . .

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