View Full Version : dive flag at night

11-21-2007, 23:56
i dusted off the old aow book but couldnt find an answer, do you place a light or chem light on your dive flag at night if shore diving

11-22-2007, 06:02
Depending on where I dive determines if I use one or not. Most of the time no, I don't use one at night. I have woudered about this as well. It will be interesting to hear other answers.

11-22-2007, 06:33
Perhaps hanging a set of small strobe lights would suit your purposes. The optimal number and distribution of lights would depend on the size of vessel that you use and the type of boat traffic that you might encounter during the hours that you choose to dive. You may also try to advise local authorities (if any) of your practices so that they will be extra observant.

WV Diver
11-22-2007, 06:43
If you are boat diving, besides the usual navigation lights that must be displayed it is common practice to hang a strobe from the boat to about 6 or 8' under the surface.

While shore diving. This article discusses the 360* white light that must be displayed and some other suggestions for kayak diving. TopKayaker.Net's Guide to Kayak Dive Flags (http://www.sit-on-topkayaking.com/Articles/FishDive/DivdFlag.html)

11-22-2007, 08:15
I would light the flag is some way shape or form. The whole idea is for people to see you flag and hopefully stay away from it. I dive in lakes, where boats can still be cruising around at night. I would light my flag up as best I could. Just my opinion though.

11-22-2007, 12:39
thanks for the advice

11-22-2007, 22:48
I have one of the yellow tube float dive flags and I put a small light in it pointing up at the flag. I also place a strobe on its anchor line.

11-23-2007, 05:52
In Western Australia you have to have your flag on your dive float lighted with an orange flashing strobe.


11-24-2007, 00:09
it makes sense to do anything to assure that you are safe. even if the law does not require a lighted dive flag at night my opinion is use one anyway. dive safe

11-24-2007, 00:13
I light it some how, I don't want any supprises when I come up!!

11-24-2007, 00:19
I like the light on the flag and strobe on the line idea. Thanks Soonerwink.

11-24-2007, 22:38
thanks everyone, my first night dive went off smooth, i taped a sstrobe to my flag

12-30-2007, 22:02
If you're using a strobe above the water, keep in mind that that Inland Navigation Rules, in addition to the 16 distress signals listed in the International Rules (The International Regulations for Prevention of Collision at Sea, or COLREGS), list as a distress signal a "High intensity white light flashing at regular intervals of 50-70 flashes per minute". This is why most strobes designed to be attached to PFD's, Type IV's ('life rings'), and other rescue and survival gear are designed to function as such.

Using a distress signal as a marker light, or for any non-distress purpose, could very conceivably not end well.

Just food for thought.

Tom A
01-01-2008, 18:50
my flag is just a square piece of foam so guess i need to hang a small strobe on it somewere will have to play with it see were to place it to keep flag up right

01-01-2008, 19:58
Having spent most of my life on the water I have to say if I'm out at night and see a strobe my first though is distress not diver and I'm going to head that way, so a strobe may not be such a good idea. If I see a solid light on a flag I'm going to steer way wide

01-25-2008, 16:04
Whatever you decide to add make sure it doesn't throw off the bouyancy of your flag. My buddies and I had to attach a little extra weight to ours when we used the glow sticks.

01-25-2008, 16:48
I've never dove at night where I needed a flag (closed quarries). If in waters with boat traffic I agree I would some way light the flag, plus if close to shore, maybe lights on the shore.

Only concern is with all those who drive boats...if they see a flag during the day, they are drawn to it. I can only imagine that if they see something flashing or lighted in the water I would predict most if not all boats would go and check it out. Kinda like attacting all the bugs to a light at night.

S. Nagel

01-25-2008, 16:58
I go to the dollar store and pick up a package of chem light necklaces and zip tie a couple to the wire stiffener and a couple to the upright pole. They weigh almost nothing and do a pretty good job. If I'm taking a larger group out I use a floating bucket and just drop an extra dive light inside with the beam shining up on the flag.

04-10-2008, 01:24
chem lights would be the best way I wouldn't put a strobe on the flag as some other people have already stated

04-10-2008, 06:32
Just a light or chemstick will work. Avoid the strobe. I work on a state LE patrol boat and would take a flashing strobe as a distress signal. Many other boaters would, too. It would be like moths to a candle. Probably 80 % of the boaters in my jurisdiction are ignorant of dive flag regs anyhow. Good luck.

04-10-2008, 07:12
I do not use a strobe at night or even a flag in Monterey Bay. I hang a white fluorescent light (required) from my boat hook that is in a fishing rod holder clamped to the transom of my inflatable. If we shore dive at night, we still do not use a flag. A strobe would be for a distress signal and hopefully would attract help, but I doubt anyone would see it.

04-10-2008, 15:49
The only night dive I've done (AOW) there was a glowstick on the dive flag

06-10-2008, 14:34
I used a chem stick on my dive flag last weekend for my 1st night dive.

06-10-2008, 23:38
I would try to light the flag with somthing continous. As for me glow stick on the valve and I carry a varibal amber strobe on my chest that I will turn to the constant on position when I hit surface at night, I will sometimes use it at night if I am with an inexperianced buddy who has little or no night background. Specificaly if I am on a reef and don't want him tailing off after somebody else by mistake.

06-13-2008, 08:27
Most of our night diving is off a boat so it's properly lighted. For the shore dives we do in this area definatly a lighted bouy.

06-16-2008, 08:36
can someone explain to me why you would attach a strobe hanging below the surface of the boat? Im assuming its just to find your way back but just want to clarify

06-16-2008, 21:07
I use a Flag-N-Float with a light in the middle.

06-17-2008, 10:01
When I night dive I make sure to take my brother with me-He has one of these as well

Inflatable Flag-N-Float, Accessories: Floats, ScubaToys, Inflatable Flag-N-Float (http://www.scubatoys.com/store/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FlagandFloat)

We just throw a light in the middle and it stands out pretty well.

01-18-2009, 18:30
We light em up around here also helps so if you get seperated to find it at the surface...

01-18-2009, 22:31
We light em up around here also helps so if you get seperated to find it at the surface...

I have used chem light sticks in the past for my flag and continue to always have one with me day or night.

I have opted to be green and now use Princeton Tec's Eco Flare (http://www.princetontec.com/?q=node/89) on the Flag and attached to my first stage. They can burn for a long time on 2 AAA batteries. And these lights are super cheap!

01-23-2009, 15:20
can someone explain to me why you would attach a strobe hanging below the surface of the boat? Im assuming its just to find your way back but just want to clarify

You are correct. It's so you can find the anchor/ascent line on the way up. More useful in more visible waters-not so useful in midwest lakes. My preference is to use a light on the flag. One that I have done when going from shore is 3 lights or fires in a line on the beach over a 50-100 yard area if possible.