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Published: November 26th 2005
Left to Right T-1000, Wingnut, Me and Rodders
Life in Pattaya is still good.....diving everyday and its Saturday night whenever you want it to be.
I wake up every morning knowing its November and still its a little bit surreal, knowing it so hot outside and my days activities will be on a boat soaking up the sun between diving in nice warm seas.
I have been kept busy and not had as many pleasure dives as I might have liked as myself and three friends have just taken a course in Emergency Response Diving.
The course is outlined at the following site and its not a recreational course whatsoever
This was probably physically the hardest thing I have ever done in my life it was a great challenge and after the first day I really did not believe I was going to achieve the times or weight holding issues. My swim on the first day was 12:minutes:48 seconds and by the last I made the grade in 8:53, the course really showed me the effect of having such supportive people around you.
The four of us who did it were Alex "T-1000" Betzold, Stuart "Rodders" Jenks, Andrew "Wingnut" Strong and myself Snowball.
The course is demanding physically by making you perform the following tasks in less than 4 hours:
400 metre swim 9 minutes
400 metre swim full scuba kit and drop tank 12 minutes
100 tired diver tow with drop tanks 4 minutes
15 minute water tread supporting 4.5kg for a minute
Underwater swim for 23 metres then clearing mask and surfacing
Recover 4.5kg from 2.5 metres and support on surface for 30 seconds
Blind bailout and donning of all equipment: Basically jump in the water holding all your kit with the air off!!
These skills were practised everyday for 3 days and then we had our final day. Also in the course you learn the skills of practising underwater tasks with blacked out masks so as to simulate black water condtions.
Underwater search patterns are practised whilst you are blind also whilst the instuctor simulates various issues you may encounter in a hazardous enviroment such as entanglement and loss of equipment or air.
Our final exercise was on the Jomtien beach where we perfomed search patterns again in blind masks and open water condtions. Steve threw a weight out into the water after we had
Willing the weight to stay out of the water
practised search patterns and it was then our task to find this weight who represented one of our team members.......
We all passed and I have never been prouder to have earned this qualification it is a real achievement and something I really did not think possible. The other lads were great and we were all very proud of each other and ourselves it was a real team effort all along and the final day really capped it off. More Photos
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