A few days ago, in one of the bay of Cabo de Palos, Spain, I could see these images of a diver (in technical diving configuration – he was with a double tank) alone walking through the bottom with fins in hand. The first reaction I had – God, what’s going on here? Immediately I asked him if he was OK, he said OK and he continued his walk direction to the beach by the bottom. I was with my REC1 students, so my students obviously afterwards began to ask me what it was that we have seen. Of course, in the theoretical classes we talk a lot about the importance of maintaining good buoyancy and a good trim for several reasons, one of which is to be respectful to the environment, to be “ocean friendly”.
What reasons did this diver have for walking in the background? I have no idea. And the truth is that I don’t want to know it, because he has “killed” many underwater bugs along his way and in this case, he has no excuse. Yes, it’s just a bay, it is not a reservation area, but we should worry about marine life where we are intruders all time. In the same bay, thirty seconds before I saw the walking diver I saw some babies of octopus and moray. We are visitors who have come uninvited. So, at every moment we should be aware and responsible for our actions.
Diving is fun! Yes, but we should have fun in common sense respecting the environment in which we find ourselves. When we have fun on the streets and if we have fun excessively – we get a penalty fee or attention from a cop, right? Well, it’s a shame that there are no policemen under water, and since we are the lucky few we can enjoy the immensity of the world ocean, we are going to be our own policemen and take care of the environment in which we find ourselves.
I don’t want to say that it’s a crime to touch or get caught up in the bottom when you’re a novice, or when you come across an emergency, but whenever possible you should avoid it. And every day you should improve your skills as a diver to avoid those “emergencies”, you should dive more often, if there is no possibility to dive more often – every time you go to the water after a long time of inactivity you should ask in your dive center for a “refresh”, and then, of course, continue to advance in your training as a diver taking courses, to become a more conscious, safer and more responsible diver with each “step” (strikethrough) kick you do.
Good diving for all!
Sasha Karnilovich // UTD Instructor # 165