Posts Tagged ‘dan’


I hope you are able to enjoy so time time with your family today or over the coming weekend.  I am heading out Sunday morning to start my return journey to the Florida Sea Base, so I am really looking forward to these last few days with family.


Copied from the DAN @ DEMA brochure:

Dr. Petar Denoble is the senior director of DAN Research.  After graduating from medical school, Dr. Denoble joined the navy in the former Yugoslavia and specialized in naval and diving medicine.  For 13 years he was involved with training, supervision and treatment of divers in open-circuit, closed circuit, deep-bounce and saturation diving.  His doctoral thesis focused on studying oxygen consumption in underwater swimming.  He has been at DAN for 20 years and has been involved in the development of the largest data base of exposures and outcomes in recreational diving, the monitoring of diving injuries and the study, treatment and prevention of fatal outcomes and long-term consequences of diving accidents.

I attended two presentations made by Dr. Denoble during the 2012 DEMA show, “Chronic Diseases and Safety of Diving: Results from the DAN Members Health Survey” and “Sudafed, Viagra and Oxygen Toxicity”.  (I commented on the second presentation in my last  post.)  The last morning of DEMA  morning I happened to run into Dr. Denoble in the A-Plus Marine Supply booth on the trade show floor.  I introduced myself, told him a little bit about the Florida Sea Base and told him I appreciated his presentations.  This started a conversation that lead to my concern about youth divers and psychotropic drug use.  That lead to Dr. Denobles interest in statistics involving young divers.  He said he was very interested in starting a dialog.  I am optimistic that this will become very beneficial for the safety of the Scouts diving at the Florida Sea Base.


My son is one of the corporate officers (and the music and audio genius behind) Rockshow Comedy.  They will release a new Scout appropriate comedy DVD tomorrow starring Tim Hawkins.  You can see a preview on their website or search “Tim Hawkins” on YouTube.  If you go to you can purchase the DVD, purchase a download, or both.  The comedy shows are usually performed in churches and are very family friendly.  This is a great gift idea. offers a preview of their comedians, ticket sales, and the opportunity to book Tim Hawkins for your own show.  Tim’s YouTube videos have had over 37.6 million views.  Enjoy!

Click to enlarge.

My son, Aaron, playing drums with the Tunafish Band in a 2008 Tim Hawkins concert.


Captain Rich mentioned yesterday that the Florida Sea Base will offer Coral Reef Sailing style adventures from St. Thomas in 2014.  In response to one of the posted comments, there are no plans to include Florida Sea Base scuba programs in the USVI for the time being.


I have been invited to discuss the possibility of writing an article or blog post for the American Health Journal. I will try to follow-up on that once the Divemaster Academy has concluded.

Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
PADI Course Director #39713

Congratulations are in order for new certified PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor Keith MacDonell.  Keith took a non-conventional path to his OWSI certification but was successful none the less.  All four candidates from Florida Keys Dive Center were also successful in the bid for this coveted achievement.  It was my honor to be chosen to evaluate the rescue skills at the PADI Instructor Exam (IE) Sunday.

The weather pattern was disappointing yesterday.  It was descent enough for the divers to head out yesterday morning but they were chased back in by rain and lightning.  Then, once it was essentially too late to go back out, the weather became much better.  When I returned from the IE, some of the Coral Reef Sailing crews were having a blast sailing the small Hunters and stand-up paddle boarding.

A new tropical system Invest 90E has developed in the Eastern Pacific but the Atlantic, Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico is remaining void of tropical development.  The low pressure system off Florida is bringing fresh breezes and some rain, but nothing severe.

Click to enlarge.

I am very fortunate to have an Apple iPad.  My do list would require a ream of paper if hand written.  It will be a busy Monday.

The annual DEMA Show is in Las Vegas again this year.  The honorees for 2012 are Dan Orr and Dick Rutkowski.  DEMA has posted and good article.  The Florida Sea base Health Advisor has collaborated with Mr. Rutkowski in hyperbaric medicine for over 30 years and is very excited for his friend’s recognition.  Mr. Orr is the President of Divers Alert Network and an exceptional public speaker.

Gotta go!  I wish I had more time, but I have to rush to the morning staff meeting.  Make it a good Monday.

Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
PADI Course Director #39713
Aboard S/V Escape 

The Florida Sea Base website recommends the purchase of travel insurance for your adventure.  I strongly agree.  Stuff happens and it’s good to be “Prepared – For Life”. Unfortunately, the Florida Sea Base and the BSA are prohibited from endorsing or recommending a specific vendor without letters of understanding, letters of memorandum, partnerships or other legalities.

Bear in mind that this site is not owned nor endorsed by the Florida Sea Base nor the Boy Scouts of America.  I own and maintain this site and bear all expenses.  So this product is not endorsed by the Florida Sea Base or the BSA but I thought I would include it here for your individual review and consideration.

The Florida Sea Base enjoys a business partnership with the Divers Alert Network (or DAN for short).  DAN has introduced a new pre-trip travel insurance.  I have no personal experience with this new product, but I am a strong supporter of DAN.  If you are considering trip insurance (which is a VERY good idea) then you might want to check them out.  If you decide to become a DAN member, buy scuba insurance, pre-trip insurance or any of their products, you could help the Florida Sea Base by including our membership number (033460) on your application.  The Florida Sea Base (not me) receives points for each new member who uses our number when they sign up.  If we get enough points, we can acquire a free emergency oxygen kit or other supplies.

Since I’m on the DAN bandwagon I want to take a few minutes to tell you about the DAN membership and insurance. You can learn a lot more by going to their website but here is a brief synopsis.  The money raised by DAN memberships is used to fund scuba related medical research.  Most research is conducted by the military and does not necessarily apply to recreational divers.  So just joining DAN is an important consideration.

DAN also sells supplemental insurance.  It was originally targeted at divers, but the travel assist coverage is great for anyone.  If you were injured while diving, your major medical insurance would be the primary insurance.  If you were at the Florida Sea Base, you would be covered by HRS insurance as a secondary insurance.  But HSR has a $10,000 cap.  DAN also serves as a secondary insurer.  Hyperbaric chamber “rides” can cost tens of thousands of dollars per treatment.  In some decompression sickness cases, multiple treatments may be necessary.  Some medical insurance policies have a $1,000 or less cap on emergency transportation.  Air transport (from a foreign country or just from the Florida Keys to Miami) can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

How much insurance is too much insurance?  While serious scuba diving injuries are rare, they can be very expensive if they do happen.  And that’s what insurance is for – peace of mind in the event of an unlikely catastrophe.

This is all provided as information only.  If you decide to take advantage of any of the DAN products I hope you will help the Florida Sea Base by using our member number, 033460.

Weather – As of 0915 the wind is very light and there is no rain at the Florida Sea Base.  We are still expecting the cold front that Chip Kasper warned us about yesterday.  This may be the calm before the storm.

I will be on the road early tomorrow morning so I won’t be able to post.  I will likely be on the road early Monday and Tuesday mornings as well.  I will try to post something Monday evening or Tuesday morning.

Capt. Steve Willis
Profession Scuba Bum™


I was running a little late yesterday morning, but arrived at the North Hall of the Orange County Convention Center just a few minutes after 7 to officially check in with the registration desk.  I was pleasantly surprised by the small number of people in line and the express registration process.  I have been coming to DEMA for many years.  I have three major complaints; DEMA requires you provide your email address and they give it (or sell it) to anyone and everyone, the on-line registration process is difficult, and securing credentials after arriving at the show is a big hassle.  The email issue remains.  The pre-registration is still a little tedious but has improved significantly.  The credential pick-up was a breeze.  I was prepared for a difficult and frustrating process but all I was required to do was show my emailed receipt for pre-registration, photo ID and 30 seconds later I was on my way.  This is a VAST improvement over years past.

On the walk over from the hotel I ran into Dan and Betty Orr of the Divers Alert Network.  They have been to the Florida Sea Base trying to establish a partnership between DAN and the BSA/FSB.  They are very nice people.  If ever ever have the opportunity to attend a Dan Orr presentation, it will definitely be worth your while.  He is an excellent, entertaining, informative speaker.

After that, I sat in the lobby, edited yesterday’s post and started on today’s post while waiting for my first PADI mini-seminar, “Dive Against Debris”, to begin.  (The Orange County Convention Center has much better free, visitor Wi-Fi than what we have at the Florida Sea Base).  I ran into several other individuals that I haven’t seen in a while including John Koonz, Niccole Sherman, Bill Hamm and Janelle Hamm (all PADI employees) and Course Director Gregg Johnson from Hillsboro, Texas.  I used to work for Gregg but I haven’t seen or heard from him in years.  Unfortunately, I was in an interview when he walked by and we couldn’t exchange contact information.  Hopefully I’ll run into him again.  In all honesty, I wasn’t sure if he was still alive.

In case one of my bosses is reading this, here’s how my schedule went yesterday:

0704-0707 Check in at registration
0900-1030 “Dive Against Debris” seminar
1100-1200 Meeting in the PADI booth with Regional Manager Mike Kurczewski
1200-1300 “Project AWARE 2.0” seminar
1300-1400 Lunch ($15 for a dried out hamburger and a bottle of water)
1400-1500 Meeting in the PADI booth with Johnny Wetzstein, Training Director
1500-1630  “Risk Management for Retailers and Resorts” seminar
1830-2030 Business dinner with Mike K and Johnny W (PADI), Capt. Bert Hubby (Florida Keys Dive Center), Tracey Brennan (Florida Keys Community College) and the owners of Sea Experience (who won the PADI “Outstanding Dive Business Award”).
2220-2300 Cram for today’s EFRIT exams

I spoke with Captain Rich yesterday.  He is still in the St. Petersburg area looking at prospective vessels for the Florida Sea Base sailing programs.  Laura Kuras has devised a plan to sell all of the remaining used scuba gear.  If you are interested in obtaining a set, please email Laura ASAP at or you may miss the boat.

Back to cramming.  (I’m too old for this.)

Capt. Steve Willis
Soon to be EFR Instructor Trainer


Rain, Rain

in Weather  •  0 comments

Our meeting yesterday morning with the BSA Purchasing Department representatives was not a TOTAL waste of time.  I promise that I went into the meeting with an open mind.  I may have the opportunity for a two-on-one meeting with them sometime today.  The objective of this exercise is to try to reduce spending.  No one can argue with that.  However, it appears that what seems like a good deal to one person may not make the best sense to someone else.  It is going to be a real challenge to get the National Office, three High Adventure Bases and 300 local Council Offices to agree on what toilet paper they prefer.

I have completed one of my 2011 BSA Smart Goals.  I turned in all of my paperwork to become certified by the Divers Alert Network as a Diving Emergency Management Program instructor.  Now I only have 5 or 6 more goals to satisfy.  We used to call Smart Goals Critical Achievements.  A rose by any other name…….  This was not a Smart Goal for Capt. Rich, but he completed the program with me.

Divemasters Mike Roesel and Jim Funnell arrived yesterday.  Capt. Scott Costa arrived Tuesday but I didn’t see him until lunch yesterday.  I think two more DMs are scheduled to arrive today.  Megan Ware and Sargon Smith with be transferring from the Conference staff to the Scuba staff on Saturday.

We have a pretty good chance of rain today.  The front is in Tampa, Florida right now, but is sliding our direction.

Starting tomorrow (once the front has passed) it should be a little more like spring than summer.  Our forecast, courtesy of the National Weather Service…

Thursday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 83. South wind 10 to 15 mph becoming west. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
Thursday Night: A slight chance of showers before 1am. Mostly cloudy during the early evening, then gradual clearing, with a low around 60. Breezy, with a north wind between 15 and 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Friday: Sunny, with a high near 69. Breezy, with a north wind around 20 mph.
Friday Night: Clear, with a low around 57. Northeast wind around 15 mph.
Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 73.
Saturday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 63.
Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 77.
Sunday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 66.
Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 77.
Monday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 66.
Tuesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 79.
Tuesday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 67.
Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 80.

I may take Capt. Dennis to the Fort Lauderdale or Miami Airport tomorrow so he can validate the travel instructions he submitted in yesterday’s post.  He is an adventurist.

The computers for the program, conference, galley and retail departments will be off line today.  Ellen is taking the day off. Capt. Rich and I will out of service, unable to access email, the internet or the server.  All of our work documents are saved to the server, not to our hard drives.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

Yesterday, Capt. Rich and I spent the day completing our DEMP instructor training with Larry Zettwock of the Divers Alert Network.  (Former Florida Sea Base staff member Tracy Brennan is working on her DAN Instructor Trainer certification and joined in with Capt. Rich and I.)  As a result, we are now certified to teach Basic Life Support/1st Aid, CPR, AEDs, Oxygen Provider, Advanced Oxygen Provider, 1st Aid for Hazardous Marine Life Injuries and On-Scene Neurologic Assessments.  What a day!!!  All of the above qualifies us to teach the Dive Emergency Management Program.  I want to thank Larry as well as Sam Merrill, DAN Business Membership Manager, for getting us through these courses.  Larry, Sam and her husband are all BSA volunteers.

For our 2011 season staff, Capt. Dennis asks, “do you have more time than money for getting to the Florida Sea Base”?  If so, please click on the READ MORE button at the bottom of today’s post to learn how you can get from the Fort Lauderdale or Miami Airport to the Florida Sea Base for less than $10.  This took Capt. Dennis literally HOURS to research.  Thanks Capt. Dennis.  You’re the man.

I have too much on my plate today.  Staff hiring continues, we have a meeting at 09:00 in Admin with the BSA Purchasing Department, the refrigerator repair guy is coming at  09:00, I have to pick up a sailboat in Key Largo and bring to to Sea Base (via truck), I really need to do laundry and I need to go grocery shopping.  Whew!

Today’s forecast is 83º, sunny, and east winds at 15 mph.

Remember to click on READ MORE to read Capt. Dennis’ travel report.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

Half of the seasonal program staff were off yesterday.  The rest worked on scuba tanks again.  We are very close to completing that task. Capt. Dennis Wyatt and First Mate Kyle Beighle took a high school group out snorkeling yesterday morning.

Capt. Rich, Capt. Paul Beal, Capt. Keith Douglass, Rob Kolb and I spent a couple of hours  in a meeting yesterday morning with representatives from Aquatic Design and Engineering discussing the design and costs of  new swimming pool.  The meeting went very well.  I was pleasantly surprised by their cost projection of less than $1 million.  My biggest concern with the entire project is securing permits from the Village of Islamorada.  That will be very tough.  Anyway, no final plans were made but the design company left with the input they needed to make a final proposal.

After the meeting, Capt. Rich and I spent most of the rest of the day working on summer hiring.  We are getting down to the nitty-gritty and dealing with the harsh reality of not being able to hire everyone who has applied.  I’m not sure how well Capt. Rich is holding up this morning, but it’s 02:30 and I’m composing this post because I got tired of tossing and turning in bed.  If I’m going to be awake anyway, I may as well be accomplishing something.

We have a Coral Reef Sailing crew (aboard Misty Shoals) returning to base this morning for their mid-week day.  The staff (who aren’t working on scuba tanks) will be busy taking the crew sailing, kayaking, tubing and challenging them to a game of volleyball.  Capt. Rich and I are hoping to finish our instructor training with Divers Alert Network today.

Right now the temperature is a very comfortable 70, but the humidity is 82% with little likelihood of rain.  It is very common occurrence during the spring.  Arizona may have “dry heat”.  But even during the summer it is the norm for us to have a humidity almost as high as the temperature.  When our temperature reaches 90º and the humidity is as low as 70% we experience a heat index (or “feels like” temperature) of more than 105º IN THE SHADE.  Add another 15º if you’re on the sunny deck of a sail or dive boat.  The National Weather Service cautions “with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity… sunstroke, muscle cramps and/or heat exhaustion (is) likely”.  Welcome to HIGH ADVENTURE.

Heat Index Chart

The Heat Index is the temperature the body feels when heat and humidity are combined. The chart below shows the Heat Index that corresponds to the actual air temperature and relative humidity. This chart is based upon shady, light wind conditions. Exposure to direct sunlight can increase the Heat Index by up to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.


Relative Humidity (%)
40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95 100
110 136
108 130 137
106 124 130 137
104 119 124 131 137
102 114 119 124 130 137
100 109 114 118 124 129 136
98 105 109 113 117 123 128 134
96 101 104 108 112 116 121 126 132
94 97 100 102 106 110 114 119 124 129 135
92 94 96 99 101 105 108 112 116 121 126 131
90 91 93 95 97 100 103 106 109 113 117 122 127 132
88 88 89 91 93 95 98 100 103 106 110 113 117 121
86 85 87 88 89 91 93 95 97 100 102 105 108 112
84 83 84 85 86 88 89 90 92 94 96 98 100 103
82 81 82 83 84 84 85 86 88 89 90 91 93 95
80 80 80 81 81 82 82 83 84 84 85 86 86 87
With Prolonged Exposure and/or Physical Activity:
Fatigue possible
Extreme Caution:
Sunstroke, muscle cramps, and/or heat exhaustion possible
Sunstroke, muscle cramps, and/or heat exhaustion likely
Extreme Danger:
Heat Stroke or Sunstroke likely

Approximately 400 people die each year from exposure to heat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Our bodies dissipate heat by varying the rate and depth of blood circulation, by losing water through the skin and sweat glands, and as a last resort, by panting, when blood is heated above 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit.

Sweating cools the body through evaporation. However, high relative humidity retards evaporation, robbing the body of its ability to cool itself. When heat gain exceeds the level the body can remove, body temperature begins to rise, and heat-related illnesses and disorders may develop.

If you must be out in the heat:

  • Limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours.
  • Cut down on exercise. If you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, nonalcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat.
    Warning: If you are on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage.
  • Try to rest often in shady areas.
  • Protect yourself from the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat (also keeps you cooler) and sunglasses and by putting on sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (the most effective products say “broad spectrum” or “UVA/UVB protection” on their labels).

Provided by the National Weather Service.

I hope you are warm and dry and avoiding the unpleasant weather in parts of our country.  We are very blessed to be in the Keys (until hurricane season rolls around).  I’m going to try to get two hours sleep.  It’s going to be a LONG Tuesday.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

It did not rain at the Florida Sea Base today.  I saw Capt. Luke (S/V Lady Nell II) and Capt. Dave ( S/V New Horizon) pruning hedges today to work off some of their dockage.  Capt. Larry Zettwoch, our local Divers Alert Network examiner, spent all morning preparing Capt. Rich and I to be DAN instructors.  (It will take another three or four half day sessions to complete.) Capt. Rich and I will emerge as DAN Dive Emergency Specialists and we will be certified to teach DAN courses in Basic Life Support (1st Aid and CPR), AEDs for Scuba Diving, Oxygen First Aid for Scuba Diving Injuries, Advanced Oxygen First Aid for Scuba Diving Injuries, First Aid for Hazardous Marine Life Injuries, and On-Site Neurological Assessment for Scuba Divers.

Laura Kuras sold some more used scuba gear today and has started working on regulator overhauls.  I received two more applications for the Divemaster Academy.  It looks like we may have a full class after all.  The administrative offices were very quiet today.  (Friday – go figure.)

We are forecasted to have a gorgeous weekend; lows of 73, highs of 83, clear skies, winds from the east at 15.  You can’t beat that with a stick!!!  We have no concern for any tropical developments until mid-week or later.  Hurricane season is not over.  Wilma smacked us on 24 October 2005.  The systems like Paula that form near Nicaragua and Honduras and then linger near the Yucatan are always worrisome.  The water is cooling some, but is still plenty warm to support hurricanes.  The water near the Yucatan Channel (between Mexico and Cuba) is estimated to be 79º as deep as 400′.  (Come on you Mr. Wizard types.  Can’t one of you geniuses figure out how to power the entire world off the thermal energy in the Gulf Stream?)

I may sleep in Sunday – or go sailing.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

The captains at the Florida Sea Base did an excellent job yesterday.  The wind was brisk, but the divers got their dives in and the sailors got to sail.  Even the night dive was a success with Capt. Rich at the helm.  Today’s forecast continues to include small craft warning.  Here is today’s marine forecast from NOAA.

Thursday And Thursday Night…East winds near 20 knots and gusty. Seas beyond the reef 5 to 8 feet…except higher in the gulf stream. Seas inside the reef 2 to 4 feet. Nearshore waters rough. Scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms

Here’s the latest projection for Invest 93L.

None of the current forecast models has 93L directly impacting the Florida Sea Base.  One model has it traveling over the Deepwater Horizon site and threatening the New Orleans area; two models have it dissipating near the Yucatan; and one shows it passing the Yucatan and continuing west.

Before I forget (again) I want to thank Capt. Martin Ivy, S/V Tradewind,  for bringing me a nice piece of leftover tuna Tuesday.

The meeting with the DAN officials ended in an agreement to review and edit the contract proposed by DAN.  It was very nice to meet Dan Orr and his wife Betty Orr.  Capt. Larry Zettwoch, a DAN Instructor/Trainer and part time Keys resident was also in attendance.  I have met with Capt. Larry on three or four occasions previously.

So all is well overall.  We are dealing with the wind.  The staff members are doing a great job.  The critiques are good (except we need more shower and toilet facilities for the Coral Reef sailors who return for a day off mid-week).

I had another adult leader stop by the office yesterday to tell me he reads this blog and appreciates my efforts.  And I certainly appreciate that.  Just as a reminder, I own and pay for this site myself.  My son, Aaron, handles all of the technical stuff.  I write this blog on my own time, usually after a 10 to 12 hour work day except on very rare occasions when I hammer something out during work hours.  The OFFICIAL website for the Florida Sea Base is  It is updated fairly frequently with urgent news and registration information.  It is a great source of information about the Florida Sea Base programs and has a link to the reservations website.  The Florida Sea Base Conference Center website is  And please visit our eCommerce site at  Capt. Dennis Wyatt’s book, The Bald Man and the Sea, is still listed but is either sold out or just a VERY few copies remain (like 2 or 3).  This is a funny book to read and will be gone forever when the remaining copies (if there are any) are sold.  You can also call the Ships Store at 305-664-5624.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape @ 04:06 a.m.

It’s going to be a rough day at sea at the Florida Sea Base.  Small craft advisories are in effect on the Atlantic side of the Keys (locally referred to as the ocean side) and probably won’t be lifted until Sunday at the earliest.  This is not a hazardous situation for us because all of our boats are larger than “small craft” classification.  The Coral Reef sailboats will stay mostly on the Gulf of Mexico side of the Keys (locally referred to as the bay side) where they can take advantage of the wind for sailing without having to deal with the five to seven foot seas on the ocean side.

Unfortunately there are no scuba sites on the bay side so the divers will have high seas and reduced visibility to deal with – “high adventure”.  Bear in mind that we have about $1.5 million invested in our scuba boat fleet to insure the highest possible level of safety and comfort (if anyone is ever comfortable in 7 foot seas) for days like these.  Plus we have exceptional captains and scuba staff who will “call the dive” if the conditions are more intense than the skill level of our participants.  So everyone is in good hands, even if the weather is not cooperative.  The worst case scenario is the divers can’t dive.  If that happens, we will have shore-side activities for them.  Mother Nature rules the outdoors.  Usually we are blessed with very good weather.  Sometimes it rains and sometimes we have too much wind.  We make the best of whatever we are given.

The forecasted track for Invest 93L, which could become Tropical Storm Alex, does not look good for the Deepwater Horizon oil well site.

Courtesy of

Here’s the 02:00 (2:00 a.m.) update on the forecasted track for Invest 93L.  Hopefully the system will follow the more southernly routes suggested by some of the models.  So far however, the models have all shown at least some tendency to move the track further north.  It’s a long way out and the forecasts are not as accurate as we wish they were.

I have a meeting this afternoon with Paul Beal, General Manager of the Florida Sea Base, and Dan Orr, CEO of the Divers Alert Network, to discuss the benefits of a more formalized business relationship.  DAN was organized in 1980 and I think I have been a member since 1982.  It is a non-profit organization linked to Duke University.  They offer very reasonably priced diver accident insurance that I encourage all divers to consider.  They may be the only non-military entity that does research into scuba diving related medical issues.  You can read about the Divers Alert Network yourself at  While I am a strong personal supported of DAN, I am not sure that the Florida Sea Base can benefit from a formal business relationship with them.  However, I am sure Mr. Orr will have some strong arguments to present.  DAN is a Scout friendly organization.  Sam (Samantha) Merrill is their Director of Business Membership.  She is a Cub leader and her husband is also active in Scouting.

I don’t know why I continue to be amazed at how many Scouts I come across in the diving industry.  There are more Scouts/Scouters in the PADI corporate office than I can count.  We have friends at DAN.  The CEO of XS Scuba is an Eagle Scout.  I have met Scouters who work for NAUI.  Our regional Aqua Lung sales rep is an Eagle Scout.  So is the regional sales rep for Mares scuba equipment.  I’m sure the list goes on and on.  If you’re a Scout or Scouter involved in the scuba business I would like to hear from you.  Just send me a comment at your convenience.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape