Coast Guard to hold a safety demonstration for the start of the 2016 Spiny Lobster Season

dive flagSan Pedro – Members of Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach, along with federal, local and state agencies are scheduled to hold a safety demonstration for the start of 2016 Spiny Lobster Season on Friday. The event will start at 10 a.m. at the 22nd St. Landing Sportfishing Marina, 141 W 22nd St, San Pedro.

Roughly 20 percent of all diving incidents in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area occur during the first week of spiny lobster season.

All divers are urged to exercise caution and remember these top five safety tips before diving:

  • Have a medical assessment by a doctor before diving.
  • Always dive with a buddy, and leave details of your dive trip with someone ashore who will report you overdue if you run into trouble.
  • Plan your dive, follow your plan, and provide your emergency plan to someone on shore.
    Choose dives that match your training, experience and fitness level.
  • Practice emergency procedures, like dropping your weight belt and inflating your buoyancy compensator, in a controlled environment.
  • Maintain aware of air supplies and serviceability of dive equipment

The normal hazards of water sports and recreation are more dangerous for those spending time below the surface. Strong ocean and rip currents can occur at any time of year. Water temperatures, limited air supply, reliance on equipment for survival, and the lack of underwater rescue capabilities all make it essential that divers are fully aware of their own limits and prepared for all possible problems.

Diving safety experts report that many accidents stem from people underestimating the hazards associated with diving, and overestimating their own physical fitness and skill levels. They stress the importance of the buddy system, planning, fitness and medical issues, and awareness of weather and sea conditions.

Divers should not let schedules, peer pressure or costs push them beyond their capabilities. People who have invested time and money to plan a dive trip, or sport fishers anxious to harvest fish during a set season, may be tempted to dive in unsafe conditions or overexert themselves. It’s a good idea to have an alternate activity planned in case a dive trip has to be cancelled for weather, equipment, or health problems.

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