12 Dec 2007

DAN Europe safety and prevention campaign


The DAN Europe safety and prevention campaign aims at increasing safety awareness and cautious behavior by boat operators and drivers.

The Problem
Whoever dives with a certain frequency knows only to well the danger of surfacing due to heavy boating, which quite often with high speeds, criss-crosses over into scuba diving areas, despite the presence of diving warning buoys or dive support boats equipped with dive warning flags.
Vain are the screams and gestures in warning those on dive boats from those monitoring their companions in the water, as often the noise of arriving boats cover up the cry of warning or simply because the boat pilot isn’t paying any attention. . . .
The snorkeler, who contrary to scuba divers, who effect repeated dives, are more prone to such accidents, since they are more often at the surface.
Thus, every year, unfortunately, there are recorded cases of divers run over by boats in transit and even more cases of near misses.

The Regulations
All this despite legislation regulating each Nation, with precise standards concerning dive warning buoys and the required minimum distance to be kept of such warning signs.
The diving community is perfectly aware of these norms of which the large majority of divers scrupulously apply.

The Consequences
When a motor boat, even of small dimension, hits a diver, the injuries caused by the boat and propeller are devastating and often result in death.

What can be done
The only way to reduce the number of these tragic deaths is through an awareness campaign and the advertising of the minimum distance standards to be kept, in such a way the majority number of boat operators are aware of the fact that the diver buoy and/or diagonally white striped red flag means a diver is in the water and therefore warned to avoid hitting them with the boat or worse yet, with the propeller, and is required to transit at a distance.

The DAN Europe Safety Campaign
DAN Europe (Divers Alert Network) has for years promoted a campaign in offering free of charge and for the asking, dive warning stickers to attach at dive centers boards, resorts, the entrances of piers of tourist ports, boat rental areas, or where ever they may be most visible by the majority of people who operate boats in any tourist area where divers may be present.
The campaign is based on the wide and capillary distribution of a simple message of immediate visual warning effect which conveys at first sight, vital information on the prevention of accidents and the observing norms set in place.

How to participate?
The invitation we are extending to all divers and those who love the sea, is that of distributing this message on safety as much as possible and collaborating with us by indicating newspapers, magazines, organizations, web-sites, TV shows who could become involved in this safety prevention campaign of boat propeller accidents.