Asian Diver Magazine
By Divers, For Divers
With articles drawn from the world’s best underwater journalists, photographers and academics specialising in the vast region of Asia, Asian Diver magazine was created for the serious diver who understands the challenging lure of the deep blue. Twenty years on, Asian Diver has become a brand recognised internationally for its penetrating and unique insights into the world’s richest dive regions. Featuring content that helps boost the industry, the magazine promotes continuing education and increases knowledge and awareness of the sport. Aimed at industry leaders that include dive agencies, equipment manufacturers, dive operators and especially those working on the ground – our intrepid instructors and dive leaders – the magazine strives to create a community committed to preserving and developing this well-loved sport the world over.
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STAY SAFE AGAINST...
These may be experienced in current-convergence areas and cause water to form whirlpools with alternating upwards and downwards movements. They are potentially very dangerous. As is in strong current conditions, the first tip is to stay close to the reef. In exceedingly strong up and down currents, it may be necessary to hang onto the reef and actually climb the reef to ascend. Conditions this extreme are very rare.
More commonly, the diver will be ascending from a drift dive and experience up and down currents. The first indication may be your exhaled bubbles mixing around you or your ears popping as you ascend or descend quickly. The important thing is to get neutral and use your computer to gauge and maintain a steady depth.
If you are in a whirlpool, swim sideways first, not up or down, as this will get you out of the whirlpool. You can then sort out your depth and ascend if necessary. Using a surface marker buoy is useful in turbulent waters as it is easier to maintain the same depth in a slight down current as the float will hold you at a particular depth. You can then reel up the line to ascend.
In an extremely strong down current, it may be necessary to inflate your BCD but remember, this is very likely to result in a buoyant ascent, so it should only ever be done as a last resort (and keep monitoring and managing your depth).
The opposite of this would be an uncontrolled ascent due to a strong up current. If you cannot control your depth due to a strong current, there is little point struggling to descend to perform a safety stop. Just rest on the surface and monitor for any signs of DCS.
Text Anne-Marie Kitchen-Wheeler
A coral conservation hero...
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