Coast Guard and NOAA conduct diver emergency training

Coast Guard District 7 NewsMIAMI — The Coast Guard and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration conducted a diving accident medical evacuation exercise in Biscayne Bay, Fla., Thursday at 10:45 a.m.

The simulation was centered on an unconscious diver. A NOAA boatcrew took the diver aboard their vessel and called the Coast Guard. Coast Guard Air Station Opa Locka launched a rescue helicopter crew who arrived on scene and lowered a rescue swimmer who discussed the procedures during a real emergency and walked the NOAA crew through different scenarios.

“With the recent influx of diving accidents and more than 10 resulting in death this year in Florida, the Coast Guard feels it necessary to strengthen their efforts and training, taking every precaution possible to be prepared for an incident,” said Capt. Chris Scraba, commander of Coast Guard Sector Miami. “This year alone in Florida we have had more than 60 dive incidents where more than 50 had a positive outcome and the Coast Guard wants to continue this trend while informing the public to enjoy the thrills of diving but also maintain awareness and safety.”

There have been more than 10 diver deaths since the beginning of 2011. The Coast Guard urges divers to stay alert, maintain proper protective equipment and file a dive plan with someone reliable.

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