CAFA Safety Protocols for

Competitions and Records

1

General Rules

1.1

Safety protocols for competitions and records events are to be observed at all CAFA regional and national competitions and/or record events sanctioned and judged by CAFA.

1.2

Although not sanctioned by CAFA, it is highly recommended that all interclub competition and/or records be governed under the same protocols.

 

2

General Protocols

2.1

Safety and First Aid Equipment

2.1.1

Safety and First Aid Equipment on site shall include, but not be limited to the following:

  • DAN oxygen unit or similar system
  • First aid kit
  • Spine-board
  • Emergency communication device such a cellular-phone, VHF, etc
  • Emergency procedure plan
  • Emergency evacuation vehicle (boat, car, ambulance, etc)
 

2.2

General Safety Precautions

2.2.1

Notification of the hyperbaric chamber of the event for depth events

2.2.2

Notification of the nearest ambulance dispatch of the event

2.2.3

All equipment is reviewed and checked for operation and suitability for event area

2.2.4

A general briefing of safety procedures is undertaken with all support/safety staff on event day

2.2.5

An up-to-date emergency procedure plan is present and appropriate for event area

 

2.3

Safety Personnel

2.3.1

In the event area, the following specific safety personnel shall be on-site:

  • Two medical persons of which one will be the Safety Supervisor, both with the following current certifications within 2 years:
    • One medical person shall have an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) or equivalent status or higher
    • Basic CPR and first aid or higher
    • DAN Oxygen Provider or equivalent

  • Diving Supervisor for depth competitions / records with the following current certifications:
    • Recreational and/or technical Divemaster or higher based on diving requirements and knowledgeable with the safety protocols and requirements of the diving environment
    • Basic CPR and first aid
    • DAN Oxygen Provider or equivalent
    • CAFA Freediving Safety/Support Orientation

  • Safety scuba divers for depth competitions with the following current certification:
    • Preferably Rescue Diver or higher scuba certification in current status for recreational depths no deeper than 40m
    • Technical diving qualifications appropriate for the depths required deeper than 40m or requiring decompression
    • CAFA Freediving Safety/Support Orientation

  • Safety freedivers with the following current certifications:
    • CAFA Freediving Safety/Support Orientation with endorsement applicable to event

    • Preferably having current CPR and first aid and DAN Oxygen Administration

 

2.4

Job Description for the Safety Personnel

2.4.1

Safety Supervisor / Medical Personnel

  • In charge of the overall organization and safety of the waterside area
  • Insure necessary safety/first aid equipment is present, working and in standby condition
  • Have appropriate communication and emergency procedure plan
  • Insure the activation and response of the Emergency Management System (EMS) in the event of an emergency
 

2.4.2

Diving Supervisor

  • Insure the safety and coordination of the scuba and freediving safety personnel
  • Maintain safety and proper working order of diving safety equipment such as:
    • Emergency decompression and/or safety bottles
    • Hang or decompression lines
  • Able to assist in any in-water scuba or freediver emergency
 

2.4.3

Safety Scuba Divers

  • Provide a level of safety/support and judging for the competition and the competitors
  • Act as a buddy to in-water video/camera crew and other safety divers in the water
 

2.4.4

Safety Freedivers

  • Provide a level of safety/support and judging for the competition and the competitors in the shallow ascent zone between 20m to the surface
 

3

Time Competitions/Records

3.1

Disciplines of time competitions include the following:

  • Static Apnea
3.2

Areas of time competition include

  • Warm-up area
  • Standby zone
  • Competition zone
 

3.3

Supervision

3.3.1

Warm-up Area

3.3.1.1

Each warm-up area will be supervised by at least one safety freediver per six competitors

3.3.1.2

In addition competitors warming up should have an assistant/coach to supervise any wet breath-holds of substantial duration

 

3.3.2

Stand-by Zone

3.3.2.1

Competitors are supervised by the warm-up area safety freediver

 

3.3.3

Competition Zone

3.3.3.1

Each athlete performing in the competition zone will be supervised by one safety freediver

 

3.4

Safety Signals

3.4.1

Safety signals will be determined by the safety from the competitor

3.4.2

Signals must be deemed clear and distinguishable or a suitable signal must be agreed upon

3.4.3

Judges have the overall voice concerning safety signals

3.4.4

Safety signals are as follows:

  • One minute before the announced performance (AP) a signal will be given every 30 seconds by the safety and an distinct "OK" signal returned
  • Upon reaching the announced performance signals will now be given and returned every 15 seconds
  • Anytime a return signal isn't recognized, immediately a 2nd signal will be given
  • If the 2nd signal isn't returned or recognized then the performance will be stopped and assistance given if appropriate
 

4

Distance Competitions/Records

4.1

Disciplines of dynamic competitions/records include the following:

  • Dynamic Apnea
  • Dynamic Apnea w/o fins (freehands)
4.2

Areas of time competition include:

  • Warm-up area
  • Standby zone
  • Competition zone
 

4.3

Supervision

4.3.1

Warm-up Area

4.3.1.1

Each warm-up area will be supervised by at least one safety freediver per six competitors

4.3.1.2

In addition competitors warming up should have an assistant/coach to supervise any wet breath-holds of substantial duration / distance

 

4.3.2

Stand-by Zone

4.3.2.1

Competitors are supervised by the warm-up area safety freediver

 

4.3.3

Competition Zone

4.3.3.1

Each athlete performing in the competition zone will be supervised by two safety freedivers

4.3.3.1

Each safety freediver will have a float for the competitor to rest upon and also act as support for safety

 

4.4

Safety

4.4.1

Due to the speed of dynamic apnea, two safety freedivers will follow the athlete above and to the side, but not to obscure the judges view

4.4.2

Safety freedivers should be ready to divide the competition area into a manageable section taking into account the speed of dynamic apnea

4.4.3

Kick style, speed, body position, bubble release will be ready signs for interdiction

 

5

Depth Competitions/Records

5.1

Disciplines of dynamic competitions/records include the following:

  • Constant Ballast
  • Constant Ballast w/o fins
  • Variable Ballast
  • Variable Ballast Absolute
  • Free Immersion
5.2

Areas of time competition include:

  • Warm-up area
  • Standby zone
  • Competition zone
 

5.3

Supervision

5.3.1

Warm-up Area

5.3.1.1

Each warm-up area will be supervised by at least one safety freediver / scubadiver per four competitors

5.3.1.2

Each warm-up area will be supervised by at least one safety scuba diver a depth of 10-20 meters per 10 freedivers

5.3.1.3

In addition competitors warming up should have an assistant/coach to supervise any wet breath-holds of substantial duration/depth

 

5.3.2

Stand-by Zone

5.3.2.1

Competitors are supervised by a stand-by zone safety freediver

 

5.3.3

Competition Zone

5.3.3.1

Each athlete performing in the competition zone will be supervised by two safety freedivers meeting them upon ascent at 15m and 10m to the surface

5.3.3.2

Each athlete in the competition zone will be supervised by the following safety scuba divers:

  • Safety scuba divers will start at a maximum of 30m depth and the vertical spacing between them will be no more than 20m
  • Spacing between safety scuba divers will be such that a competitor will be within visual contact of at least one safety scuba or freediver throughout the dive
  • A lanyard system will be used if continuous visual contact cannot be maintained
 

5.4

Safety

5.4.1

Safety divers must act as depth markers, judges and safety for competitors

5.4.2

If an athlete should require the assistance of a safety scuba diver, the athlete is now a scuba diver and under the control of the safety scuba diver

5.4.3

At no time, should an athlete breath off compressed gas, will they be allowed to ascend independently and without continuous breathing off the scuba unit

5.4.4

Appropriate safety stops will be followed and the athlete may be passed to shallower safety scuba divers if appropriate

5.4.5

A float will be provided for the competitor to rest upon and also will act as support for safety

Copyright © CAFA 2002


Updated 08 January 2002 Home -> Administration