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View Full Version : Roles and responsibilities of Buddy



cgvmer
08-15-2007, 10:53
After reading another thread http://forum.scubatoys.com/showthread.php?t=1762

I found myself thinking about the responsibilities of a buddy.

I don't want to get into a 'SOLO' diver thread as that has it's own parameters surrounding it.


First off I consider myself to be a noobe.
2nd, I dive mostly with my sons (18 & 14) as my buddies so I carry additional concerns as compared to normal 'buddies', but during a couple dives without my sons my insta-buddies was shocked how closely distance-wise and attention to changes I stayed with them.
On one dive an insta-buddy decided to go to the east side of a coral ridge when we agreed at the beginning of the dive we agreed to stay west of it. When I lost sight of her I queried the 3rd buddy her location when he didn't know, I directed us up and over the ridge to look for her. After the dive she told us she was only out of sight seconds and was going to rejoin in a when she looked at a particular coral formation.


Is this not normal to look for an out of sight buddy?

Wouldn't it have been normal for her to signal that she was going out of sight?

Is my sensitivity too high because most of my dives have been with my own children?

Foo2
08-15-2007, 11:24
Like you, I dive with people that I love, my family. So I also stick to them like glue while we are underwater. Not to mention the fact that I live in North Texas so the vis in most places here isn't so grand so we are used to sticking together. I think that you were being a responsible buddy by looking for your out of sight buddy. If you and your buddy have made a plan and the buddy doesn't follow it or doesn't let you know where they are going...it is being irresponsible on their part. IMOHO In my OW class, my instructor told us that we should be no further than 1 breath away from our buddy. If you couldn't find your buddy than she was too far. If one of you were to require assistance, you would have been in trouble. In this particular situation, I feel that you did the right thing. But once again, I am a diving newbie and I dive with my family, the most precious thing I could loose.

deepdiver47
08-15-2007, 11:42
Dive the plan, plan the dive. You need to make sure that ground rules are set before you enter the water.
Night diving adds a whole new element (and risk) to diving especially in a situation like this.

cgvmer
08-15-2007, 11:57
I started this thread so we don't get tied to the tragedy thread so I prefer to refer blame in that instance (or any) but just looking for opinions about buddy responsibilities.

Zenagirl
08-15-2007, 12:58
Buddies need to be close enough and aware enough to be able to assist eachother in the event of an emergency.

For instance, I had a catastrophic failure of my regulator (primary came off the hose) and being that I was at the end of my dive, it didn't take long for the tank to drain completely of air. It took my buddy 15 (long) seconds to get to me with his octo and although I was never in any danger of dying since I could have easily done an OOA ascent safely, it was a graphic reminder of how close and how aware a buddy needs to be at all times.

dallasdivergirl
08-15-2007, 13:05
I always know where my buddy is.

I have been known to be a little too close.

Centerius
08-15-2007, 13:27
One of the biggest things I think a buddy should be able to do is stick close to me without running off. You don't have to be inches away, but I'd say they should be within a 5-10 foot radius at all times. If you want to look at something just signal me "let's go this way" and I'll follow. Most of the dives I've done, I've been the one leading. However, I like it when my buddy leads part of the time because I know that I will stay close to them.

torrey
08-15-2007, 13:32
One of the biggest things I think a buddy should be able to do is stick close to me without running off. You don't have to be inches away, but I'd say they should be within a 5-10 foot radius at all times. If you want to look at something just signal me "let's go this way" and I'll follow. Most of the dives I've done, I've been the one leading. However, I like it when my buddy leads part of the time because I know that I will stay close to them.

That's what my buddy and I have always done. We stay around 10 ft away most of the time, and I make sure he knows if I'm about to stop and take a picture. He doesn't take photos, so he just hangs and tries to get a good look at what I'm snapping.

Black-Gorrilla
08-15-2007, 17:57
I have been known to be a little too close.

come dive with me :smiley2:
:)

if (and when) I ever have that insta-buddy.. it happens to be speed racer reincarnated in a diver. what the hell can one person be in such a hurry to do underwater? this guy was speeding trough the ocean like if it was a race... ****. relax a bit, thats why i dive, cause it's fun and relaxing. Other times i get Bumper-buddy, who just bumps into me, corals etc. the whole dive, and has no sense of where anything it.. i mean come on, who steps all over coral and bumps into everything including me?

i like to know were my buddy is, at all times... 10-15 feet away tops, and since we usually dive in 30+ vis. it's not a prob.
i like to follow, just for the pure fact that i can keep an eye on whoever is with me.

if i dive with my brother and his girlfriend, we just tend to swim side by side, or slight lead/ follow... but never had to even mention to them to stay close by, or to not wonder off. just glad that from now on they will be my dive buddies.

TxScubaBear
08-15-2007, 18:01
I got so close to my dive buddy in OW I almost got to practice mask recovery! Our instructor said arms-length during training to develop the habit of always being aware of where he/she is and your surrounding; ie- SA- Situational Awareness in the diving aspect.

cgvmer
08-15-2007, 19:22
Cool, now I feel like I wasn't being too paranoid. A buddy is a buddy because there are time no matter how infrequent when we need help.

Thanks for the responses

Xspect
08-15-2007, 20:07
Give me air when I run out, Keep me alive. Buy beers afterwards

quarrydiver
08-15-2007, 21:38
and return the favor once in a while.

cummings66
08-15-2007, 22:46
As I alluded to in my thread on buddies I feel they should be close enough to help. At times that means 5 or 10 feet away where I dive, sometimes I'll lightly grab their arm if we lose it all together. It depends on the buddy and their skills.

deepdiver47
08-16-2007, 06:52
I don't like them that close. I am coming from gin clear water with little current, big reefs and walls.

cummings66
08-16-2007, 07:08
I have never dove in water that's clear so tell me, how far away do you want your buddy and why?

deepdiver47
08-16-2007, 07:20
I travel alone on my business trips, afterwards I stop for a week and go diving. For me it is insta-guide.
All of my diving is with myself and a guide in places such as Bali, Yap and even Palau. Their agenda is to watch over me
and they do a very good job of it. They watch over me like a hawk.

I like to take pictures and don't want my guide 10 feet away from me. 20-25 feet is just fine with me. When I enter the water I consider myself just shy of a solo diver. I will however get close to him if they signal that they see a camera subject that I want to shoot.
That is how I like to dive as no one in my family is in this awesome sport.

I submit that most buddies are doing their own thing when they dive. (especially people with cameras!)

TAH 73
08-16-2007, 07:44
How close totally depends on the clarity of the water, the experience of the divers, and the experience of the dive buddies. if I was with a "insta-buddy" I would watch him/her closely and error on the side of caution when picking the distance between us, as well as how often I check on them, and i would expect them to do the same.
In a low vis situation, I want to be close enough that if something goes wrong I can observe.
I had one "insta-buddy" who said he liked his space and requested that I keep 20-30 ft away, said he was a competent diver, and if something went wrong he could deal with it pretty much. I requested a new buddy sure he thought he could deal with any issue, but if something went wrong with my gear? Also couldn't figure out how someone could be that shortsighted, or selfish.

With an experienced dive pair in ideal situations I agree that you can leave some space, but you would always need to remain in clear sight and be at a distance that you can assist if you are needed.
I just have to train my buddy to stay beside me rather than beside, and 3 ft behind. Keeping them in your peripheral vision is more reassuring than having to turn around and look all the time.

deepdiver47
08-16-2007, 07:52
agreed tah, all good points. It will also depend greatly on everyone's level of comfort UW. That means you and your buddy. I still say that when you are dealing with someone that you do not know then you enter the water with a different mindset, good or bad.

Black-Gorrilla
08-16-2007, 09:07
I have never dove in water that's clear so tell me, how far away do you want your buddy and why?

like i said, with my brother and his girlfriend (my 2 buddies, almost every weekend guaranteed to be there)
we stay within a few feet away from each other.... but also have our freedom... we trust each other enuff that we know there is someone close by, and that no one is gonna stray off... i usually stay on the left of them, and tend to go off about 10-25 feet sometmes (but it's 40+ visibility) and they dont freak out, they are awere of where i am... and i know were they are.