Although there are existing safety standards and guidelines in the commercial diving industry, high risks of on-the-job injuries are quite inevitable. The agency implementing safety rules must actively update these guidelines in order to cope up with the technological advancement regarding the equipment and systems used by offshore workers.
Strict enforcement of the diving standards can make a huge impact in the reduction of personnel injuries and prevention of unnecessary loss of lives. This does not only apply to the divers alone but also to their surface counterparts including divemasters and supervisors monitoring their status while working underwater.
With regard to diving at great depths, breathing equipment can pose a serious threat to divers if operated in a negligent manner. Any medical issues associated with these devices must be treated quickly and with utmost priority.
Some of the dangers commercial divers could encounter are burns in terms of underwater welding, the most common illness known as decompression sickness, embolism, hypothermia when diving in extremely cold environment, sickness due to improper air mixing, machine-related accidents, exposure to hazardous materials and threats from harmful marine animals.
The staff and vehicles used in every dive operation must be well trained and certified because the success of each work primarily depends on how properly each task is executed.
As the saying goes, “prevention is better than cure”, measures to ensure safety are always observed in commercial diving. Regular maintenance of equipment, reliable communication and training refreshers are some of the standard operating procedures. Medical treatment preparedness plays a significant role during worst case scenarios.
Commercial divers are also required to undergo annual physical examination to determine any symptoms that may prevent them from doing their jobs safely.