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Diver dies on Nova Scotia Dam

ANNAPOLIS ROYAL – A diver that became trapped underwater at the Nova Scotia Power dam near Annapolis Royal July 15 has died.

The 39-year-old diver, wh2015_SNAP_164o is from Dartmouth, became tangled in his gear while underwater, Annapolis Royal Police Chief Burt McNeil said. Emergency personnel were called after losing contact with the diver.
His remains were recovered mid-afternoon.

McNeil said the man had been working underwater for about an hour and a half when he ran into trouble. He was wearing some high tech equipment at the time, including a video camera that was transmitting to the surface, quickly alerting the surface crew that there was a problem.

An autopsy is planned for July 16.

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• News links on Nova Scotia Divers death july 15 2015
o News articles as of 0830 July 16

 dartmouth-diver-dead-after-incident-at-nova-scotia-power-dam-1.3153135

 diver-dies-during-inspection-of-nova-scotia-power-tidal-station-1.2470599

 nova-scotia-dam-rescue-takes-place-after-man-reportedly-trapped-under-water

 14668388-diver-from-dartmouth-dead-after-nova-scotia-power-dam-incident

 Cape Breton Post

 CBC Canada

 ctvnewsatlantic

 1299328-dartmouth-diver-dies-after-mishap-during-underwater-inspection » Read More

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The use of divers and remotely operated vehicles (ROV) at hydroelectric facilities and dams can provide a cost-effective alternative to dewatering to perform inspection and/or maintenance work, as well as needed repairs. This is a wide-ranging field with many implications for hydro project owners. But what are the newest technologies and some interesting applications of these technologies? To answer these and other questions, we interviewed five companies that do underwater work at hydroelectric facilities. » Read More

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CADC upset over new Ontario diving regulations.

CADC upset over new Ontario diving regulations.

Recent changes to the Ontario Diving Regulations have landed the Ministry of Labour (MOL) in somewhat turbulent waters with some members of the province’s professional diving community.

The Canadian Association of Diving Contractors (CADC) has voiced its disappointment with recent regulatory amendments made by the MOL, particularly to exemptions for aquarium divers who would not be required to wear certain equipment or meet the same training requirements as an unrestricted diver.

“The main problem of this whole thing is by defining aquarium diver specifically, it goes outside of recognized diving category designations that are recognized worldwide,” said CADC executive director Doug Elsey, in an interview with the Daily Commercial News.

“All these categories have training and competency stipulations to them, to say you are an aquarium diver means nothing.”

The concern around the aquarium diver category mainly revolves around safety and a lack of accountability in the event that something were to happen to a diver.

“The aquarium diver should be a restricted scuba diver and he’s trained to that,” he added.

“The aquarium diver, as it’s been defined, he doesn’t have to wear a lifeline, he doesn’t have to have communications, he doesn’t even have to have a diving harness.”

Also, an aquarium diver would be considered qualified, under the new regulations, to go underwater in a tank to do maintenance work, also defined as underwater work. Elsey says this type of job should be reserved for a commercial diving company who have the proper training and equipment to complete the task safely.

An aquarium diver must still meet a majority of the competencies of a restricted scuba diver but the training is done in house rather than in open water as well as the maximum depth of the aquarium facility is less demanding.

Elsey was part of a panel discussion at the Canadian Underwater Conference which was held on April 8 in Toronto to address the changes. The panel included MOL representatives.

The MOL says the amendments were made after consulting with technical experts and the changes went through public consultations.

“There’s less risk to aquarium diver…it’s a different environment, different hazards so the exemptions were made,” said MOL provincial specialist Cliff Moore, at the conference.

“Also through the process, we had conform with legislative council…they have the final say before it’s passed.”

Though, comments and recommendations were submitted by the industry to the MOL during the consultation process, very few of those changes made the final amendment document, leaving CADC to think they had no say in the process.

“Except a few clerical changes, nothing was done, it was like they completely ignored it,” said Elsey.


From left, Doug Elsey, executive director of CADC, Dave Gallagher, of the labour/management diving committee at the IHSA, David Geddes, Chairman – CSA 275.4 Diving Competency Standard,  Michael Chapell, provincial coordinator at the Ministry of Labour and Cliff Moore, emergency management specialist at the Ontario Ministry of Labour were panelists recently at the Canadian Underwater Conference discussing new diving contractor regulations.

“What we noticed was that the version of the regulation that we had summed up was not the version that was finally presented under the IHSA letterhead.”

After representing the industry through similar regulation changes for over 30 years, Elsey remembers a time when the MOL hired professional divers as inspectors and provided input to their policies.

“We had four people from the diving industry in the Ministry of Labour and although we had our disagreements at times, we did recognize and respect the fact that the guys had been there done that,” he said.

“We all knew what was going on, we didn’t always agree on everything but we did the best we could to make sure the diver came home at the end of the day.”

Elsey wants the aquarium diver taken out of the regulation or at the very least, require them to be trained as an unrestricted scuba diver by a recognized school.

The changes have put the diving regulations more in line with CSA Standards Z275.2-11 — Occupations safety code for diving operations, which came into law March 1, 2014.

» Read More
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