A common misconception surrounding ROVs within the commercial/salvage diving industry is that ROVs are being used to replace divers. At Deep Trekker, it is not our goal to take over the jobs of divers but to simply offer a tool that can be used in conjunction with divers to save time and improve safety during jobs.
If you have been following our blog for a little while now you will know that we, the Deep Trekker Team, are constantly working to learn about the industries we sell to so that we can continue to develop and expand our products to meet the needs of those using them. Commercial diving is absolutely no exception.
Through our own extensive research and talking with professionals working in the salvage industry it has become very clear to us that though it is a necessary profession in a manner of ways, the risks associated with commercial diving are not few and far between. Between exploring unknown areas, diving near moving equipment, inspecting tight spaces, and dealing with ocean currents, commercial divers risk their safety almost every time they take on a job.
Commercial diving is an integral part of any business venture that takes place within the water. Aquaculture for example, is an industry that relies on commercial divers to perform all underwater maintenance on the farms. It is safe to assume that without divers to fix any infrastructural issues on the farms, the risk of escapes and broken structures significantly increases. That being said, the underwater infrastructure of a farm can be complex and involve a lot of components and areas that are easy for divers to become tangled in. This is where having an ROV to work in conjunction with a diver is a huge asset. Rather than calling in a commercial diver every time an underwater inspection needs to be done, farm managers can use the ROV to check out the infrastructure and then identify the problem before the diver is sent down. This reduces the chances of the diver becoming entangled in any of the infrastructure because it has eliminated the diver’s need to swim around and find the problem. It also offers a way for those on the surface of the water to keep an eye on the diver and make sure that they are not facing any more safety challenges.
Salvage diving is also a prominent part of energy production facilities. Whether it be offshore rigs or nuclear plants, commercial divers are called in to inspect various aspects of the infrastructure. In some cases the areas that require inspection are too small for a person to fit, in which case using the ROV is the perfect option. In other cases, the area that a diver needs to explore is new and may contain unknown risks and dangers. This is when the ROV is the perfect tool to send down and assess a situation before sending a person in to perform their work. Again, the ROV also gives those who are at the surface of the water to keep an eye on the diver as they perform their work- this is especially advantageous on offshore rigs and other open water situations where risks are increased.
At Deep Trekker we have also developed our diveable control system that is designed to allow divers to actually take the ROV below the water with them and control it while diving. After speaking with professionals in the industry we have heard that this tool is the perfect way to use ROVs in conjunction with divers. Whether a diver is exploring a new area and wants to assess the situation before venturing further or they are doing inspections near the trash racks and/or travelling screens in a nuclear power plant, the diveable control system gives divers the ability to control the ROV from below the water. In turn, this combination provides the perfect balance of human judgement when assessing a situation while still keeping the diver away from immediate danger. To see our Diveable Control System in Action click here to watch the video.
So while some may see ROVs as a risk, they are really there to improve the safety of operations and increase efficiency. At Deep Trekker, we have a number of relationships with professional divers from around the world and the last thing we want is to have professionals feel that we are trying to take over their jobs. In reality, we have been striving to provide a tool that can be used to improve the safety of dives in an industry that can be very dangerous.