The Allure of Wreck Diving
As long as there have been shipwrecks, there has been wreck diving. And why not? What is more mysterious and fascinating for divers to explore than the hulk of a ship that sunk long ago? Divers cite many reasons for the allure. There’s always the chance – albeit a slim one – that divers will discover a sunken treasure among the wreck of a ship. Mostly, though, divers like the ambiance of swimming above the wreckage of a ship.
However, wreck diving, while an amazing experience, can also be dangerous. That’s why there are certain safety steps scuba diving enthusiasts should take when swimming through the remains of old ships. Those divers who don’t practice these safety steps might find themselves unexpectedly trapped in the wreckage they find. Divers should not attempt wreck diving until they’ve logged several underwater hours and taken several long diving adventures. Exploring a wreck may require divers to dip far below the surface. Divers without enough experience can suffer serious injury on these deep dives.
Once divers have earned this experience, there’s one more step they should take before attempting wreck diving; all divers should take special training. It’s easy to find reputable classes that offer training in this area. It’s too risky for divers to explore shipwrecks without first receiving the basic information on what to expect and how to keep safe when exploring sunken ships. Divers rely on special equipment when wreck diving. Classes teach divers how to use this equipment properly to protect themselves.
For instance, divers who are exploring shipwrecks rely on powerful underwater lights. They also use long reels of line that help guide them out of the sometimes confusing maze of a shipwreck. Those participating in wreck diving also use bring along extra tanks of air in case of wreck divers follow a simple rule: They don’t touch or disturb the wreck in any way. There is a safety reason for this. It’s easy for divers to cut themselves when handling pieces of wreck. Remember, most submerged ships come with sharp edges.
There’s a second reason, though, for not disturbing a wreck: common courtesy. By touching a portion of a wreck, you may alter it. This alteration may lessen its beauty, spoiling some of the fun for the wreck divers that follow in your wake. It’s best to adhere wreck diving’s unofficial hands-off policy. If you’ve never done any wreck diving in the past, you owe it to yourself to give it a try. Exploring a sunken ship is an adventure you won’t soon forget.