Two dead, one prop struck - First Day Lobster Mini Season, Florida

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kelemvor

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Diving is probably one of the very few activities that’s not government regulated, where the majority of participants willingly agree to pay 2-3 privately owned corporations for training where it’s not in fact required. As a matter of fact, I can’t think of another one.
Believe it or not, there are 198 active scuba certification agencies! Some only do tech or cave, but most aren't limiting themselves. Also many colleges/universities offer scuba as a class. I'm not sure if the colleges give you a card from one of those private companies or not. I understand a college scuba class is much more in depth than a typical private scuba class but I've never personally done it.

The thing is that it's not regulated. That means I could start "kelemvor scuba agency" and offer cards to whoever I wanted based on whatever criteria I wanted today and it would all be legal. Now, if some boat had actually heard of kelemvor scuba and decided not to accept my certification they could do that. Most boat ops would not notice. Technically, my card would be as good as any other companies' card... and if I got some crossover instructors to issue my cards the training may very well be good training.
 

Scuba-74

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Believe it or not, there are 198 active scuba certification agencies! Some only do tech or cave, but most aren't limiting themselves. Also many colleges/universities offer scuba as a class. I'm not sure if the colleges give you a card from one of those private companies or not. I understand a college scuba class is much more in depth than a typical private scuba class but I've never personally done it.

The thing is that it's not regulated. That means I could start "kelemvor scuba agency" and offer cards to whoever I wanted based on whatever criteria I wanted today and it would all be legal. Now, if some boat had actually heard of kelemvor scuba and decided not to accept my certification they could do that. Most boat ops would not notice. Technically, my card would be as good as any other companies' card... and if I got some crossover instructors to issue my cards the training may very well be good training.

All true. I absolutely believe that you can learn more by reading this forum and doing a few dives with a very knowledgeable buddy or buddies who are willing to pass some of their knowledge to you, than by taking and average Caribbean “official” class.

So my point was - the fact that people dive without taking classes should not come as a shock, it’s not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself.

EDIT: we all have seen our share of “certified” divers who don’t know the first thing about diving. I have seen examples of certifying shops forcing people to pass that plainly did not meet the requirements of a certification.
 

The Chairman

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but I would like to hear more about the madness.
One year, when I was living in the Keys, the headlines read: "NOBODY DIED!!!" I'm not kidding.

Every Captain Morgan and Ensign Budwiser is out trying to grab lobster. They haven't been in a boat for years, but they're going to show us all how it's done. Usually, the head boats have a far, far better record than the private ones. Those noobs are the guys who back up over their own divers. The boat launches are a fun place to watch bumper boats. My last mini-season was in 2002 or 3. I caught my largest ever lobster, but we got hit by three boats on our approach to the launch. Never again.
..... and solo
I certainly didn't mean to leave that out! :D :D :D Just added it in. Thanks for the heads up.
 

Wookie

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Presumably you'd have to own a plane or have a friend with a plane willing to strap you to a parachute and throw you out the door :)

Never tried skydiving, but from the ones that did I gather the operators have you go through a few hours of safety course before letting you jump. Places that start with solo jumps, not tandems, have you jump off of a parked plane etc.
Sure, and if you owned your own boat and air compressor you could go diving with no one saying anything.
 

DandyDon

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What percentage of people take formal swimming classes? Is it significantly less risky to swim in the ocean with waves and rip currents than do a shallow dive with fins, tank, and a flotation device? As a result, how many swimming vs. diving accidents are there?
"On average, over the last decade, 105 people have drowned in South Florida each year, according to statistics kept by the Florida Department of Health, 1,054 people in total. Of these, 205 have been children." From South Florida’s drowning statistics are scary: Here’s how to keep your kids safe

I don't know the percentages on swimmers or divers much less the number of exposures, but I wouldn't say it's "significantly less risky to swim." I learned to dive in a concrete pond over 500 miles from the ocean before the town even had a filtered pool as was pretty naive when I got in the ocean the first time. I was lucky, which can also be said about my untrained free diving and even my clumsy diving today.
One year, when I was living in the Keys, the headlines read: "NOBODY DIED!!!" I'm not kidding.
That was surprising news since the average is around two a year. We saw that the first day. Maybe today won't be as bad.
 

DanBMW

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We used to go down for the mini season 20 years ago, in Key Largo and never used SCUBA. We always snorkeled in an area called Barnes Sound and the water was about 6-8 feet deep. We would troll about 3-4 people behind the boat and generally got our limit in a few hours. They were delicious....
 

Bob DBF

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I'm not sure if the colleges give you a card from one of those private companies or not.

I've run across a few college certified divers in NorCal and they were NAUI certified. A couple were certified AAUS science divers, but that was after dive certification, the same NAUI instructor was also a DSO for AAUS.
 

Wookie

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Skydiving is for sure regulated in the US.
By the government?
 
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