Our entire world has been turned upside down by coronavirus.
We now have to run to new protocols in several areas of our life, including disinfecting our diving equipment. The training agencies have proactively issued guidance to individuals and dive centres to help minimise the risk of COVID-19, and this includes effective equipment sanitisation.
There are a number of solutions on the market - the latest is from Fourth Element. They are working in conjunction with ‘The Diver Medic’ and created ‘GoodToDive’.
GoodToDive in its diluted form kills viruses, bacteria, and difficult to control organisms, such as spores, algae, yeast fungi and slime bacteria
This powdered product dissolves, and is effective in both fresh and salt water. The resulting oxidizing reagent can be used to disinfect masks, regulators and BCDs. Even better it can then be safely discarded without damaging the aquatic environment. (This is not possible with several commonly used disinfectants – they can be toxic to aquatic life – hence they have to be disposed at a recognised waste disposal facility).
Just 30g is required to prepare 4.5 lt of sterilising fluid
Confidence in clean kit
It goes without saying that dive centres will be actively doing all that they can to ensure they minimise the risk of infection. But how can you help give divers confidence that their equipment has been suitably sanitised? Once gear has been disinfected with GTD, the user can apply paper-based tape to show that the kit is clean, giving the end-user peace of mind.
Fourth Element has confirmed that GTD will initially be available in 1 kg / 2.2lbs tubs. Apparently just 30g / 1.05 oz is required to prepare 4.5 lt / 7.91 pints (just shy of 1 imperial gallon) of sterilising fluid.
I can see this being a useful product for the travelling diver. I currently use and carry Steramine to disinfect my equipment because it comes in tablet form, making it light weight and convenient to carry. As GoodToDive comes in powder form, and you only need a small amount to make up an imperial gallon of fluid, this looks to be useful when weight is a consideration. Just remember to have some kind of documentation attached to the container you decant this into, otherwise you may have an interesting time with customs officials.