Volume 1, Number 3, Page 1


February 1998


December and January were extremely busy at NDC. Between the EMT/DMT course in December and the Working Diver course in Key West last month, the majority of the staff was unavailable. We are now back in the office, "have are heads above water" (both literally and figuratively), and are ready to update you on a number of issues.

The January Working Diver course was held at the Florida Keys Community College diving training facility, in Key West, Florida. We were very impressed with the facility, its location and amenities. We plan on using the college for future winter training classes.

Instructions on certification procedures for the new NOAA Scientific Diver and information regarding AAUS reciprocity/authorization process will be covered in detail in this issue of TOPSIDE. Please read these sections carefully and use the new forms (enclosed) when conducting evaluations/operations and processing individuals.

The new draft diving regulations are complete and will be forwarded to Safety Board members for comment. The new regulations include changes from the last three board meetings and should be approved and issued later this year.

SCUBA/SCBA compressor air test kits were sent to units in January. Please complete your test(s) and return the kit(s) to TRI as soon as possible. Delays in returning the kits incur additional costs, so please call NDC if you can not complete your test promptly.

Finally, dive locker inspections are now due. If you have not completed yours yet, please do so and send it to your LODO and NDC ASAP. End of article

 -LCDR  Frank Wood -


Please review the enclosed roster which reflects the records at NDC for the date of print. Inactive/terminated divers are to return SEP equipment or resolve their status to active as soon as possible. Units will be assessed SEP charges for inactive divers who are in possession of gear. Please annotate and return a copy of the roster indicating any changes to personnel or diver status. Diver certifications will be suspended when a physical has expired or when diving activity has lapsed for six months.End of article


The Scientific Diver certification was created for NOAA and non-NOAA personnel that only conduct research diving. Research diving consist of scientific observation and data collection as described in the OSHA Commercial Diving Regulations. The Scientific diver can only complete these specific tasks and can not perform underwater construction and trouble shooting operations traditionally associated with commercial and NOAA working diving.

Individuals seeking Scientific Certification must be a "scientist" or "scientist-in-training" and possess the following: a nationally-recognized diving certification at a level higher than basic/open water; current first aid, CPR and oxygen administration training; provide a resume of diving activity with a minimum of 25 open water dives; complete a NOAA physical; pass the NOAA Scientific Diver exam and complete an open water checkout dive(s) with a UDS.

Copies of the new policy, procedures and updated forms are enclosed for your use and inclusion into your UDS and Divemaster handbooks.End of article


Previous Newsletter Previous Newsletter NDP Home Page Page 2 Next Newsletter Next Newsletter