SUNBIZ

First Submarine Training

Locals learn from a United States Coast Guard expert All tourist submarines must be limited to dive a depth of 150 feet and not more, recommended Timothy Wilcox, a United
18 Nov 2015 10:07
First Submarine Training

Locals learn from a United States Coast Guard expert

All tourist submarines must be limited to dive a depth of 150 feet and not more, recommended Timothy Wilcox, a United States Coast Guard (USCG) based in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Mr Wilcox said this criterion is very important because at this depth, the diver will be able to respond in case of any emergency.

Mr Wilcox, a senior inspector with over 18 years experience on tourist submarines was in Fiji recently conducting a training for Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji’s technical team and submarine pilots and management representatives of Laucala Island.

“This is the depth at which a diver will not have to use non-decompression table for scuba,” he told training participants.

Mr Wilcox recommended that all pilots be issued Class 6 Fijian license with submarine specific endorsements and submarines to be issued a Certificate of Fitness by MSAF. Submarines are to be marked with an official number and the respective companies owning submarines should provide Safety Management System procedures for its operations.

He added that since the current submarine-tending vessel was not large enough to safely support submarine operations, a few items should be placed on board.

“The support vessel should be manned by two crew- one crew to operate the support vessel and the other to provide assistance to the submarine.

“Some items to be placed on board are distress signals, a dive flag, a complete set of dive gear, a portable flash light and communication tools that can function well between the submarine and the support vessel regardless of the depth,” Mr Wilcox said.

MSAF acting chief executive officer John Tunidau and Commander George Butler of the USCG Hawaii had arranged this historical and prestigious training.

 

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