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On 25 September 1999 17:46, Christian Gerzner wrote:
 
> > I don't know whether other Australians would agree with me?, (probably
not -
> > on principle!<BWG>), but in some respects the regulations and Codes of
> > Practice that govern diving (certainly those that apply in Queensland),
> > while seemingly well-intentioned, do *sometimes*  tend to work against
the
> > diving industry's best interests.
 
> > Not least is the fact that in an attempt to improve safety, they cosset
the
> > lowest common diving denominator and discourage people from either
> > learning - or retaining - valuable knowledge!  (I asked a certified
nitrox
> > diver just a couple of hours ago what the reccomended PPO2 limit was and
> > they couldn't even tell me what PPO2 meant!)  :-)
 
> Uhhh, Strike, you _really_ didn't expect me not to fall for that bait? :-)
 
Of course not! :-)
 
> i) The Queensland regs are quite possibly an indirect, if not direct,
> result of the "lowest common denominator factor" in the current standard
> of Scuba training witnessed in this country and elsewhere. I know,
> sweeping statement. I rather doubt that most on this Forum would disagree.
 
I actually don't have a problem with pitching diving education to the lowest
common denominator.  The problem - as I see it - is when governments attempt
to introduce regulations and codes of conduct on voluntary activities such
as diving.
 
Invariably based on protecting the weakest elements in society, such
regulations usually discourage the concept of accepting responsibility for
ones own actions and often leads to people unconsciously assigning such
responsibility to others - a state of affairs that, in diving, doesn't
exactly encourage or promote the need for continous education, or even an
elementary understanding of physics and physiology.
 
> ii) Then you gave me the perfect example "they couldn't even tell me
> what PPO2 meant!": Whilst I am _not_ nitrox certified I _do_ know what
> PPO2 means and entails. FUC 5.2, I even know how to calculate it.
Actually I knew >how to do this long before nitrox was thought of,
 
You do mean the use of nitrox for recreational diving, don't you?    :-)
 
>if only to learn (for myself) how to avoid OxTox territory.
 
Actually - unless you're talking about deep air diving - nitrogen narcosis
was/is probably the thing to be more concerned about.
 
> Actually I would have thought its not that hard, which only goes to show
> that some people should not be certified at *anything*. I consider that
> if I can do it, the majority should be able to do so.
 
> Sadly, currently the onus is on the Instructor to *certify* rather than
> *fail*, which includes certifying rather than failing _instructors_.
 
(although it's all relevant, I've snipped the rest for brevity)
 
> Then again, how much longer is this seeming deterioration in training
> standards, not just, it seems, in entry level standards, going to
continue?
>
> A nitrox "qualified" diver who doesn't even know what PPO2 means (leave
> alone, I would presume, how to calculate it?). How totally,
> ridiculously, absurd. I suggest that that diver's Nitrox Instructor
> could be criminally negligent if this person has a nitrox related
incident.
 
The immediate reaction of most of us, is to fault the Instructor or the
programme.  But I think it's a little more complex than that.  Because
recreational diving is a voluntary activity, it's a fair assumption on the
Instructor's part that people are taking a course because they have a real
interest in acquiring knowledge.
 
For many people that's not even a consideration!  They're there to meet
members of the opposite sex; overcome personal phobias; to challenge
themselves; to see fishes - whatever!   They'll absorb, (and be able to show
that they have), sufficient information  to pass the course - and then
promptly go and forget all about it!  Overlooking the fact that divers can
be sneaky, devious and cunning - or just plain thick! - they're no different
to other sectors of the community when it comes to retaining knowledge!
 
"Use it, or lose it!" is an apt comment.  Most of us tend to 'forget'
information that we're not required to use on a daily basis.  The problems
arise, however, when a person holding a valid 'for life' certification card
presents themselves as qualified to do certain
types of diving - such as the use of nitrox.
 
While they might have absorbed exactly what was required of them to pass the
course, their actual interest in the subject may have been slight.  They
either haven't bothered to maintain or improve their knowledge levels;  or
they're conceited enough to believe that they've retained what they were
taught; it may even have been two or more years since they completed a
course,or last used nitrox.  As a consequence they have a card that
proclaims them to be
trained - and a knowledge level that suggests otherwise!
 
To suggest that the Instructor is at fault is - to my of thinking - a load
of cobblers!  :-)
 
Strike