Night Diving - How to Avoid Risks?
Night diving is distinguished by the fact that it is practiced at hours when there is little or no sunlight, i.e. before sunrise and after sunset, which allows us to study the interesting nocturnal life of the marine flora and fauna.
This opens the doors to a new and wonderful world, full of unique creatures that can only be seen at night, stunning colors thanks to the luminescence of some species and shapes and sizes of all kinds. However, such a world of wonders is not without dangers and risks to be discovered, starting with the fact that humans are mostly diurnal beings and our pupils are not well adapted to the absence of light.
It is worth mentioning that this factor, together with the fact that our bodies are developed to withstand terrestrial and not marine conditions, represents the main challenge when performing this activity. For these and more reasons we invite you to read on and discover everything you need to know so you can practice night diving safely and without complications.
What should you consider before Night Diving?
Before diving at night, it is advisable to follow the following safety instructions:
- For this type of activity an advanced technical level of diving is required. However, in case you do not have it, preferably, it should be done together with someone who does have it.
- If you are new to this type of diving, it is best to start your dives during those hours of the day when there is still some light. This way you will be able to adapt progressively.
- The equipment must be appropriate, you must make sure that the wetsuit you use is the right size and that it is suitable for your build, weight and physical capabilities. In this post we tell you how to choose your wetsuit correctly.
- Never forget your flashlight and back-up light. Remember that it will be your guide during all your night dives.
- The lack of light undoubtedly presents a number of additional risks, so these dives must necessarily be made in areas known to divers and at a depth of no more than 20 meters.
- We advise you to create a buddy system and not to move away from the group in order to avoid the risk of getting disoriented and/or lost.
- The groups should not be too large, in order to maintain greater control and coordination and to prevent any member from getting lost from sight.
- It is of vital importance to check the weather and sea conditions to avoid difficulties during the dive and during emergence.
- All divers in the group must respect the dive plan and the area must be protected from boats and ships by the use of special buoys on the surface that delimit the perimeter.
- It is not recommended that dives last longer than 30 minutes to avoid complications with flashlights. Keep in mind that if your light source pays out, your dive is over and you could be in a risky situation.
- The support boat or the shore team must be fully aware of the dive plan and be alert to any alarm signal to give notice. In this way, the safety of the submerged group is guaranteed.
Tips for Safe and Secure Diving
Knowing how to dive safely is vital, whether you dive during the day or at night. For that reason, here are some tips from our dive instructors to help you dive with confidence:
- Go to a Certified Diving Center: This will not only allow you to be accompanied by professionals in the area, but you will also be able to train with different diving courses and specialize. Learn as much as you can before diving.
- Keep all your equipment securely fastened: Be sure to tightly fasten your flashlight or headlamp throughout the dive, preferably tie it to your forearm or wrist to avoid losing it.
- Three is better than one: Always carry a backup flashlight, plus a chemical light, or glow tube, in case the first or second one fails for any reason.
- The compass should be your faithful companion: No matter how experienced you are, you should always carry a diving compass with you to keep you well oriented.
- Follow the line: At the time of the dive follow the guide rope, it will be of great help during the descent and will keep you together with the group from the beginning.
- Diving signals: Pay close attention and learn very well the meaning of the different diving hand signals, movements and light patterns so that you can communicate well with your guides or buddies when they are underwater.
- Always stay calm: Avoid panicking or becoming anxious, stay relaxed and serene throughout the practice. This will help you manage your breathing better and perform more easily.
- Unity is always strength: Do not separate yourself from the group for any reason, much less from your partner, as this will avoid the risk of getting lost.
- Keep your flashlight on at all times, you can only turn it off if the group leader tells you to do so because he has become aware of a certain danger or situation that may pose a risk.
- You are not a pirate: Avoid going near wrecks or diving in caves, you could run a great risk of getting trapped or encountering a hostile species if you do so.
- "OK and Something's Wrong": Generally moving the flashlight in a circular motion means that everything is "OK", while moving it up and down vertically means that "something is wrong". However, you should check with your guide before starting as in some places it may vary.
- Be patient: The most experienced recommend waiting 2 hours after sunset before diving, this ensures that there is a greater amount of active marine life and will make the experience much more enjoyable and impressive.
- You are not Aquaman: Don't overreach. When diving we must be very cautious and be very aware of what our limits are and how far we can go. Especially in night diving we must leave the reckless aside.
- Don't be a rascal: Nobody likes to come home and make a mess or even less to be harassed. Therefore, respect all animals, all flora and, of course, also the site where you are diving.
Night diving is a fantastic experience and a lot of fun if you take all your precautions. For this reason, don't limit yourself, just educate yourself and don't stop enjoying this wonderful modality.
That's as far as we've gone for now. But remember that if you have any questions or if you want us to clarify any doubts, leave a comment and we will answer you in the blink of an eye.
And if you want to be part of this incredible experience, you can dive in Lanzarote with us, where you will find magical places with the best professionals such as Titan Blue Divers.