Home About Commercial Diving Minimum Commercial Diving Standards Required in Canada

Minimum Commercial Diving Standards Required in Canada

Commercial Diving is one of the most potentially dangerous work activities. Diving work is regularly undertaken throughout Canada.

“In Canada, in a work force of only a few thousand divers, there have been more than 50 occupational diving fatalities since 1975. This is about twenty times the rate in construction, one of the most hazardous land based industries ….. On average, several hundred accidents occur in industry for every fatality or disabling injury. In diving the ratio is about five to one. This is not to say that diving operations cannot be carried out safely, only that, in contrast to other work activities, there is almost no margin for error in diving.”

The following C.S.A. guide has been prepared to help Clients identify the minimum standards acceptable by the CADC. It is not complete, but offers the Client a check list of observable points, quoted directly from the standard, to assist in choosing an acceptable Diving Contractor who knows and adheres to acceptable safe work practices. For complete information consult with the relevant regulatory authority in your area.

1. Who does this standard apply to?
“The C.S.A. Standard Z275.2 applies to occupational diving operations conducted in connection with all types of work and employment,…”

2. What qualifications are required by Diving Personnel?

Diving Medical
“A diver shall not be permitted to dive unless a signed statement issued by a licenced medical doctor competent in hyperbaric medicine is presented, stating that the diver has received a comprehensive examination during the preceding twelve months…”

Medical Alert Tag
“A medical alert tag … shall be worn by each diver for at least a 24 hour period after completing each dive.”

Skills Training
“Competence of Diving Personnel shall be acceptable to the Regulatory Authority…”
This is easily identified by the Federal Government Certification that includes internationally recognized Diving Certificates for various diving positions including Diver and Diving Supervisor. Other certifications will be acceptable if they are evaluated and approved by the CADC certification program.

Safety Training
“Each diver and diver’s tender shall be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and basic first aid and trained in the treatment of near-drowning victims…”

3. What is the minimum crew size for Diving?

SCUBA Diving
“It is generally recommended that free-swimming SCUBA diving not be used for commercial diving operations….”

“When diving in a tethered mode a minimum of three workers shall be present at each dive site, one of whom shall be a diver, one a standby diver, and one a diver’s tender. One of the two workers at the surface shall be designated the diving supervisor.”

“When diving in a free swimming mode a minimum of four workers shall be present at each dive site, two of whom shall be divers, one a standby diver, and one a diver’s tender. One of the two workers at the surface shall be designated the diving supervisor.”

“The standby diver shall not dive or be required to dive except in the event of an emergency.”

Surface Supply Diving
“For each diving operation where planned depth does not exceed 40m, a minimum crew of three shall be present in the following capacities:

(a) Two shall be divers, one of whom shall be a stand by diver.
(b) One crew member shall be a diver’s tender…
(c) Either the diver’s tender or the standby diver shall be designated as the diving supervisor.”

“When the depth exceeds 40m, a minimum crew of four shall be present in the following capacities:
(a) Two shall be divers, one of whom shall be a stand by diver.
(b) One shall be the diving supervisor, who shall not enter the water.
(c) One crew member shall be the diver’s tender…”

“…for depths greater than 55m….. a minimum crew of five shall be present … It shall consist of the following personnel:
(a) one diving supervisor
(b) two divers; and
(c) two diver’s tenders.”
“A standby diver shall be present on all deep diving operations” Continued next page

4. General Dive Procedures
“A general plan of the diving operations shall be discussed in detail and accepted by the diving supervisor, the divers, and the onsite representatives of the employer and/or owner.”

“Each diving operation shall be conducted under a competent diving supervisor…”

Standby Diver
“A dressed-in standby diver shall be present at all times…”

Approach to Intakes
“The diver shall not approach any intake until the flow through it is stopped or controlled by positive means. Provisions shall be made so that the flow cannot be reestablished until the diver leaves the water or until the diving supervisor has declared the diver clear of the hazardous location. When the flow cannot be stopped, the safety of a diver approaching the intake shall be assessed by the determination of flow patterns using direct measurement, calculation, or other means acceptable to the regulatory authority.”

Hazardous Mechanisms
“It shall be the responsibility of the diving supervisor to ensure that, before a diver approaches a location that may be made hazardous by operation of mechanisms, such mechanisms are
(a) secured against inadvertent movement before the diver enters the water;
(b) locked out according to the regulatory authority; and
(c) locked out in a manner satisfactory to the diver and diving supervisor.”

Medical Standby
The employer shall verify that the diving contractor
(a) has arranged for a physician to be available during diving operations and for 24 hours afterwards to provide medical assistance in the event of an emergency; and
(b) has ensured that an adequate means of communication will exist on a 24-hour-a-day basis between the diving station or the craft from which the dive is being carried out and the physician.”




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