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Health and Environmental Effects Research

GED To Host 2012 EPA National Diver Safety Training Course

The NHEERL Gulf Ecology Division (GED) will host the EPA National Diver Safety Training Course on May 21-25, 2012, coinciding with coordinated site visits by senior officials and staff of the Office of Administration and Resource Management’s (OARM’s) Safety, Health, and Environmental Management Division (SHEMD) and the Office of Water. This year’s course will train EPA scientists in safe scientific diving techniques and will include participants from OARM; SHEMD; OW; Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 9, and 10; and GED. The National Diver Safety Training Course is coordinated through the EPA Diving Safety Board, which is an OARM SHEMD program.

The week-long diver safety training program, led by the Director of EPA Diver Training, GED’s Jed Campbell, enables divers to perform research and other duties underwater. Some of the areas covered include diving accident management, oxygen administration, oxygen enriched air diving (nitrox), principles of scientific diving, surface supply diving, drysuit diving, polluted water diving, decontamination procedures, divemaster and operations management, compressed gas handling, underwater to surface communications, and underwater video and photography. Divers will take the skills learned here back to their respective offices across the country to use in support of Superfund, ocean dumping, research, and other important needs of the Agency.

Since the inception of EPA’s diving program in 1984, more than 600 divers have been trained at GED. Those divers have gone on to record more than 35,000 scientific dives with no serious injuries.

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