COVID-19

UCSB Marine Operations and Diving & Boating Safety has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic and is working to help ensure scientific diving and boating can be conducted as safely as possible, while continuing to uphold scientific diving & boating safety standards.

COVID-19 Resources

Information, documents and related links.

Current Scientific Divers Banner

Scientific Diving

Scientific divers are required to fully comply with all requirements outlined in the campus diving safety manual.  Information about dive planning, maintaining certification and diving standards can be found below.

UCSB Scientific Diving Standards

The policies, procedures and standards set forth in the Diving Safety Manual are intended to govern the training and diving operations of all personnel participating in scientific diving at the University of California, Santa Barbara. It applies to all scientific divers operating under University auspices, including visiting divers, and to those campus officers responsible for the administration of the scuba program. The dive manual contains procedures covering all diving operations specific to the program, procedures for emergency care, including recompression and evacuation and criteria for diver training and certification set forth by the Diving Control Board.

UCSB’s Scientific Diving Manual complies with the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS) Standards for Scientific Diving Certification and Operations of Scientific Diving.

Dive Planning

Any person diving under university auspices shall observe the provisions of the UCSB Diving Manual and all divers are to be trained as a scientific diver.  The UCSB Diving Control Board requires that all dive projects submit a dive plan to the Diving Safety Officer detailing any proposed dive project.  Dive plans are to be submitted through Webdiver and emergency contact information and dive planning references are available below.

Requirements for PI/Lead Diver of a Project

  1. Submit a general dive plan through Webdiver, ideally 1-2 months prior to the start of the project, for review/approval. All diving operations are required to have an approved dive plan, even smaller pilot projects that graduate students tend to conduct often.
  2. Ensure all divers joining the project will have an active scientific status on Webdiver during the proposed project. Ideally 1-2 month prior to the trip if possible so divers can update their status if needed.
  3. When collaborating with another scientific organization: Submit a Letter of Reciprocity (LOR) request on Webdiver and note dive dates, divers that need their LOR sent to other organization and what dive plan they will be diving on. Ideally 2-4 wks prior to the trip.
  4. All visiting divers (non-UCSB) need to be approved by the DSO and complete a waiver prior to joining any UCSB project.

Dive Planning References

Resources

Maintaining Diver Authorization

UCSB's Active Diver Requirements

Dive Physical

  • FREQUENCY: A diving physical is required within the preceding 5 years (3 years if over the age of 40, 2 years if over the age of 60) from the last diving medical evaluation
  • UCSB's STUDENT HEALTH: Please make an appt. with Dr. Robert Hughes if you are having your dive physical completed at UCSB's Student Health: 805 893-5361
  • FOLLOWING ANY MAJOR INJURY OR ILLNESS: Clearance to return to diving should be obtained from a physician following any major injury or illness or any possible contraindications to diving. Please refer to NAUI's List of Contraindications to Diving and contact DAN and/or the UCSB DSO if you have any questions concerning your fitness to dive.
  • NOAA DIVE PHYSICAL: Please contact the DSO if you will need reciprocity with NOAA since they require you complete a different dive physical.

Dive Logs

All research dives are to be logged into your online dive log monthly. During any 12-month period, each certified scientific diver shall log a minimum of 12 dives. Please signup for a refresher dive from your Webdiver homepage.​

Depth Authorization

At least one dive to your approved depth authorization should be made during each six-month period. Information about how to increase your current depth authorization can be found on the Depth Certification page available on the left hand side of this webpage.

CPR & Oxygen Administration

Diver's Emergency Management training requirements are to be kept current and the UCSB's Diving Safety CPR/O2 refresher training should be updated annually. Please signup for an upcoming course from your Webdiver homepage.​

Equipment

All equipment shall be regularly examined by the person using them before each dive. Regulators and BCDs inspections are available for all UCSB Scientific Divers. If your gear is past its service date or does not pass the annual inspection then you will need to get this updated prior to using it on a UCSB project. SCUBA equipment requirements include:

  • Scuba regulators, hoses, computers, gauges, BCDs and other diver related equipment shall be inspected by the diver prior to each use and only used if functioning properly.
  • Scuba regulators, hoses, gauges and BCDs shall be functionally inspected/tested at intervals not to exceed 12 months.
  • The regulator’s first and second stages should also be serviced at a minimum of every two years, or per manufacturer's recommendations.
  • Scuba Cylinders: Must be hydrostatically tested in accordance with DOT standards and be visually inspected every 12 months.
  • Drysuits: Drysuits must be sent out annually for an inspection and service if necessary. Monterey Bay Diving & DUI can complete this inspection and please let us know if there is another vender you plan to use.

Please see the directions available in the Documents Section if your SCUBA regulators require servicing. If your gear is due for an inspection, please sign up for an upcoming UCSB Equipment Inspection from your Webdiver homepage.​

Scientific Diver Status Levels

Active

Diver has current medical examination with no contraindications for diving, has current certification in First Aid and CPR, and has met the 12 dives per year standard.

Sustaining

Diver has one or more deficiencies, i.e., medical examination has expired, CPR / O2 provider is not current, equipment not currently inspected or has not maintained the 12 divers per year activity level. Contact the DSO to inquire about a diver with this status.

Inactive

Diver has let medical examination expire and/or has not maintained minimum dive frequency of 12 dives per year for over a year. Reconsideration for ACTIVE dive status requires contacting the Diving Safety Office, updating your records and may require refresher training and/or a skills/academic evaluation.

Restricted

Special limitations are imposed on diving activities in which the diver may participate, e.g., restrictions due to the diver’s medical status or questionable skills.

UCSB Scientific Diver Classification Levels

Scientific Diver

Diver meets 100 hour training criteria w/12 logged training dives. A checkout dive may be required if not previously completed at the time of classification as a Trainee or via reciprocity from another research diving program.

Trainee

A newly trained scientific diver that has not completed the 12 required scientific divers. Individuals qualified at the Trainee level must dive with an active UCSB scientific diver at all times.

Visiting Diver

Diver certified through reciprocity from another scientific diving program and must dive with an active UCSB scientific diver.

Depth Certifications

Divers completing the research dive course are certified for research to a depth of 30ft. A certified scientific diver may progress to the next depth level after successfully completing the required dives for the next level. Dives deeper than certification depth shall be planned and executed under close supervision of a diver certified to that deeper depth. Only under these circumstances may the diver exceed their depth limit.

Certification documents can be found on the right side of this page.

60ft Certification

Complete and log the 12 required dives at a depth between the next certification depth range (31'-60') under supervision of a research diver holding at least a 60' certification. Complete 60ft Depth Certification Packet and submit to the Diving Safety Office.

100 ft Certification

Complete and log the 12 required dives at a depth between the next certification depth range (61'-100') under supervision of a research diver holding no less than a 100' certification. Complete 100ft Depth Certification Packet and submit to the Diving Safety Office.

Contact the DSO to inquire about obtaining a 130ft or 150ft scientific diving depth certification.

UCSB Scientific Diving Standards

The policies, procedures and standards set forth in the Diving Safety Manual are intended to govern the training and diving operations of all personnel participating in scientific diving at the University of California, Santa Barbara. It applies to all scientific divers operating under University auspices, including visiting divers, and to those campus officers responsible for the administration of the scuba program. The dive manual contains procedures covering all diving operations specific to the program, procedures for emergency care, including recompression and evacuation and criteria for diver training and certification set forth by the Diving Control Board.

UCSB’s Scientific Diving Manual complies with the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS) Standards for Scientific Diving Certification and Operations of Scientific Diving.

 UCSB WebDiver

Dive Tracking and Reporting.

Documents

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