Are UK diving fatalities rising? BSAC presents its 2018 Incident Report

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Are UK diving fatalities rising? BSAC presents its 2018 Incident Report

October 29, 2019 - 18:36
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One of the key presentations given at the recent BSAC Diving Conference was on the BSAC Annual Diving Incident Report.

Professor Clare Peddie recently took over Brian Cumming who used to produce the incident report. She opened her talk at the DOC by thanking him for his exemplary service.

Clare Peddie was given an hour to review the diving data, talk about the lessons to be learned from the incident data, discuss the efficacy of some of the rescue techniques and state the reports conclusions. She wrapped up her presentation in the traditional manner of revealing some of the more unusual (and often amusing) reports.

For those of you unfamiliar with this safety resource, the incidents are analysed and broken into categories: ie ascents, boat / surface, DCI, equipment, fatality, injury / illness, miscellaneous and training. It is written in plain English and it is certainly worth downloading a free copy to read. You can see for yourself what is happening to the fatality numbers. Just follow the link at the bottom of this article.

Some Stats

  • Incident year: January - December 2018
  • 250 incidents: 214 UK, 36 overseas (involving BSAC members)
  • Incident data comes from various sources, HM Coastguard, RNLI, PADI, members reporting incidents, media press cutting service

Lecture Online

Not every diver can attend the BSAC Conference, therefore BSAC has just released of the presentation given by Professor Clare Peddie.

A historical safety resource

This safety report from the British Sub Aqua Club dates back to at least 1964, making it the oldest diving incident report in the world.

The BSAC Incident Report year used to run from 1 October to 30 September in the following year. These dates were historically linked to delivering the annual report at the Diving Officer Conference in December. Two years ago it was decided to move the DOC to an Autumn date (this year it was on 26 October), which caused a painful scrabble to write and deliver a relevant report to Conference. It was therefore decided that going forward from this year that the reporting year will change to the calendar year, i.e. 1 January to 31 December.

Jim Watson, BSAC's Safety and Development Manager stated "this will allow a more realistic analysis, and better information from other agencies. It will also mean there could be access to better information, i.e. details from coroners inquests.

Sources and references