Every day for almost a week, the whole world was focused on a tiny little area of Thailand, where 12 boys and their coach and gotten trapped in a cave. Hundreds of rescue personnel from around the globe offered their services.
There was much speculations on how to bring the trapped kids out of the cave. Would take months the news agencies reported. Fear mounted for the safety of the trapped group as the rainy season was about to unleash torrential downpours of rain.
To find out about the specifics of the case, you can read several different articles on the web to find out who the brave men and women are that mastered one of the most publicized rescues in months.
This blog post isn't about the heroics of the rescuers, it is about you, the average diver. See most of us are parents. The parental aspect of trapped kids has spurred much of the anxiety and heartfelt sympathy for all those involved. As divers, we think how hard could that be, to bring those kids out. Diving isn't that hard. Everyone should do it.
As an avid recreational diver, instructor, Public Safety Diver Instructor, Black-Water Diver there is much more that goes into the rescue of those boys. I am not an expert. I am not a certified cave diver. I am however very experienced.
Most divers dive when the viz is 40+ feet typically ranging up to 80 feet. Waters temps well above 75° with a straight surface swim available should the need arise. Getting into more overhead environments and low-viz situations is extremely dangerous without proper training. It is easy to get entangled or stuck which can lead to a low or out of air emergency. Low-viz is dangerous because you could get lost and not be able to exit safely. Not to mention the psychology of the mind of the diver when you can't see or move in the dark.
There are several classes however that can help you prepare yourself to be a better diver. Most of you will never need to rescue another diver beyond a broken fin strap, dropped weight or perhaps out of air/share to the surface. Additional training will build your confidence and give you valuable skills for future diving.
First of all is the PADI Rescue Diver course will prepare you to self-rescue and how to take care of others. This goes hand in hand with EFR course and PADI Oxygen Provider. These are very rewarding challenging courses all divers should take.
Specialties such as Full Face Mask, Side Mount Diver and Self Reliant Diver, are key componets of the techniques the rescuers utilized in the cave in Thailand. However as a recreational diver, these are classes you can take to improve your diving and work toward your PADI Master Diver.
Knowing most of us will never want to go beyond recreational diving, keeping your skill fresh and adding more training will boost your confidence as a diver!
Picture courtesy of NBC