Following two diving-related deaths and a rise in diving activity, the U.S. Coast Guard is asking divers and mariners in the greater Los Angeles area to be safe during California spiny lobster season.
“The importance of boating and diving safety cannot be overstated,” said Cmdr. Johna Rossetti from Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach. “Remember to be safe in anything you do. Taking precautions can increase the chance of helping or finding a diver in the event Coast Guard assistance is needed.”
Divers should never dive alone, be medically assessed before diving, make a diving plan, provide a float plan to a person on land in case divers don’t return on schedule and rehearse procedures in the event of an emergency, according to the agency.
When using commercial dive vessels, divers should make sure the mariner is credentialed and inspected by the USCG. Divers should also curb potential fire hazards on the boat and be mindful of emergency exits on vessels and dive flags when moving in certain areas.
Mariners must report diving incidents to Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach on VHF channel 16 or at 310-521-3801.