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Public Safety Diving Programs
Public safety divers, conduct a variety of important and potentially stressful underwater tasks – including rescue, evidence and body recovery, underwater inspections and more – for local communities. Public safety divers are typically in law enforcement, fire departments or emergency services and couple their job experience with specialized dive training to carry out these underwater activities in a safe, efficient manner.

We offer two agencies Public Safety Diving programs, PADI and ERDI. Please check out both programs to see which one fits your needs.

PADI Public Safety Diving Course


Course Requirements:
To enroll in a Public Safety Diver course, you must be certified as a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver and at least 18 years old. You also need to earn your PADI Rescue Diver certification by the end of the course.

Course Topics:
The PADI Public Safety Diver Program familiarizes divers with the skills, knowledge, planning, organization, procedures, techniques, and hazards of public safety diving. It establishes a solid public safety diving foundation and includes basic rescue skills (both surface and underwater), knot tying, search techniques, victim recovery, tender responsibilities, communications, and rescue techniques for a distressed public safety diver. The program covers several key topics that include Specialized public safety diving equipment, Scene handling, Communication procedures, Search patterns, Witness handling, and Victim and self-rescue techniques.

Water skills include a variety of common, useful search patterns as well as team diving roles as primary diver, rescue diver, tender, safety diver and supervisor. The program uses proven field techniques, and both meets and addresses important National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) guidelines found in NFPA 1006 and 1670.

The PADI Public Safety Diver Surface Support Specialist Program is run in conjunction with the PADI Public Safety Diver Program. It involves hands on training to familiarize public safety support staff with the skills, knowledge and techniques needed to support divers during a public safety operation. Participants will be exposed to the use of special procedures, equipment, scene handling, communication procedures, basic public safety diving search and rescue techniques, emergency procedures and documentation requirements. There is no diving experience required and is open to non-divers. Participants must be affiliation or employment with a public safety dive team. They must have EFR Primary and Secondary Care (or equivalent CPR and first aid) training within the past 24 months.

Materials and Equipment Needed:
Materials Needed By Divers
-Notepads and pens (more than one color are helpful)
-Clothing that can be worn to crawl around on the ground for the land drills
-Tending gloves
-EMS personnel should bring BP cuffs and stethoscopes to check blood pressure
-Weather-related gear
-Bring appropriate sunscreen and bug repellent
-Timing device such as a watch
-Clipboard or pad with a hard back for recording dives
-Personal flotation device
-Snacks & fluids (no alcohol)

Equipment Needed By Divers
-Mask and fins
-Exposure suit and accessories as appropriate for local diving environment
-Weight system with weights; Weight belt webbing should extend 10-12” beyond buckle when worn with suit
-Regulator system with submersible pressure gauge
-Two Scuba Cylinders – 80 cubic feet
-Pony bottle with independent regulator system (at least 19 cu. ft.)
-BCD with low pressure inflator
-Complete instrumentation, including a means to monitor depth, time, and direction
-Divers must bring logbooks and certification cards
-Divers wearing dry suits should have a block of paraffin wax in a clean plastic bag and plenty of pure talcum powder
-A minimum of 2 cutting tools, with at least one pair being shears
-Dive bag

Recommended specialty equipment and supplies:
Recreational Dive Planner (Table or eRDPML); Pocket mask; Spare mask; Support equipment (first aid, oxygen, communications equipment, etc.); Spare parts kit with a roll of duct tape; 50-50 mix of rubbing alcohol and white vinegar for ear washing after each dive

Materials Needed By Surface Support Personnel:
-Notepads and pens (more than one color are helpful)
-Clothing that can be worn to crawl around on the ground for the land drills
-Tending gloves
-EMS personnel should bring BP cuffs and stethoscopes to check blood pressure
-Weather-related gear
-Bring appropriate sunscreen and bug repellent
-Timing device such as a watch
-Clipboard or pad with a hard back for recording dives
-Personal flotation device
-Snacks & fluids (no alcohol)
-A minimum of 2 cutting tools, with at least one pair being shears

Recommended Specialty Equipment and Supplies:
Pocket mask; A roll of duct tape; 50-50 mix of rubbing alcohol and white vinegar for ear washing after each dive.

Course Scheduling:
Our program is conducted over three days, with two classroom presentations of four hours each. There will be three practical applications of three hours each and over three days, there will be four dives, rotating positions.
Confined water sessions may be added to introduce new skills or equipment to the class. The participant must demonstrate accurate and adequate knowledge and performance of all skills fluidly with little difficulty, in a manner that demonstrates minimal or no stress during the open water dives.

Course Fees:
Diver Fee: $500.00 each
Non-Diver Fee: $300.00 each

The above price includes Store, Instructor, PADI Certification Fees, PADI Public Safety Diver Manual, and certificates. If needed, use of other Public Safety Diving equipment not supplied by the host agency. There are also Surface Support Personnel-diver laminated signal cards for both.

Class size is limited to 20 divers and 10 surface support personnel. For any number of divers less than 20, the same number of surface support personnel can replace them. All divers must show certification cards and some type of dive logbook upon the start of the course.

ERDI Public Safety Diving Course

This entry level emergency response diving course is designed to give the public safety diver the fundamental skills needed to safely function as part of a public safety dive team and is OSHA and NFPA compliant. Topics such as problem solving, tender skills, search patterns and evidence handling are covered just to name a few. Dive skills include executing search patterns, victim recovery, emergency procedures and decontamination procedures among others. ERDI also serves as a prerequisite to ERD Ops Components courses.

Course Requirements:
To attend our program, you must be an Advanced Open Water Diver or qualifying equivalent certification, at least 18 years of age, have proof of affiliation/employment with a public safety team (law enforcement, fire, paramedic, EMT, dive rescue team, etc.)

Please note that only individuals employed in fields such as law enforcement, fire suppression and emergency services are qualified to take our program. This program lays out an excellent foundation for dive team members with little or no experience but will also work well for experienced divers wanting to refresh basic skills and learn new public safety diving techniques.

Course Topics:
In our ERDI Public Safety Diving course we’ve designed it to familiarize you with the skills, knowledge, planning, organization, procedures, techniques, and hazards of public safety diving. The course covers several key topics that include Specialized public safety diving equipment, Scene handling, Communication procedures, Search patterns, Witness handling and Victim and self-rescue techniques.

Water skills include a variety of common, useful search patterns as well as team diving roles as primary diver, safety diver, tender, 90 percent diver and supervisor. The program uses proven field techniques, and both meets and addresses important National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) guidelines found in NFPA 1006 and 1670 (not including disciplines Ice 9/3/7, Surf 9.2.8, or Swift 9.3.9).

Materials and Equipment Needed:
Materials Needed By Divers and Surface Support Personnel
-Notepads and pens (more than one color are helpful)
-Clothing that can be worn to crawl around on the ground for the land drills
-Tending gloves
-EMS personnel should bring BP cuffs and stethoscopes to check blood pressure
-Resuscitation mask
-Weather-related gear
-Bring appropriate sunscreen and bug repellent
-Timing device such as a watch
-Clipboard or pad with a hard back for recording dives
-Personal flotation device
-Logbook
-Snacks & fluids (no alcohol)

Equipment Needed By Divers
-Two Cutting Devices (shears, knife, seat belt cutter, etc.)
-Two Scuba Cylinders – 80 cubic feet or larger
-Two surface signaling devices (whistle, surface marker buoy, etc.)
-All personal standard dive equipment

Course Scheduling:
Our program is conducted over three days, using a combination of two classroom presentations of four hours each, three practical application sessions of three hours each and Four dives over the three days.

Confined water sessions may be added to introduce new skills or equipment to the class. The student diver must demonstrate accurate and adequate knowledge and performance of all skills fluidly with little difficulty, in a manner that demonstrates minimal or no stress during the Open Water dives.

Course Fees:
Diver Fee: $500.00 each
Non-Diver Fee: $300.00 each

The above price includes Store, Instructor, PADI Certification Fees, PADI Public Safety Diver Manual, and certificates. If needed, use of other Public Safety Diving equipment not supplied by the host agency. There are also Surface Support Personnel-diver laminated signal cards for both.

Class size is limited to 20 divers and 10 surface support personnel. For any number of divers less than 20, the same number of surface support personnel can replace them. All divers must show certification cards and some type of dive logbook upon the start of the course.

Who We Are
  • We’ve been around for over 30 years teaching scuba. We believe in a family atmosphere, each of our divers becomes a member of our diving family. We believe in quality scuba training, equipment and service.

Contact Info
  • Fort Walton Beach Scuba
  • fortwaltonbeachscuba@gmail.com
  • 850-716-0867
  • 425 Page Bacon Road
    Mary Esther, FL 32569
  • Hours:
    Tuesday - Saturday: 10 am - 4 pm
    Sunday: 10 am - 2 pm
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