Since 1997
Propeller Safety
by DAN Medical Team on August 6th, 2016

​Propeller injury prevention

​Of all the various types of diving injuries, those involving propellers are the most frightening. Sadly, several divers have been killed or seriously injured by propellers.

We believe that many of these accidents can easily be prevented by raising awareness, exercising good seamanship and respecting some basic rules as a diver.

This campaign focuses on the concept of risk management from two points of view, the boaters’ and the divers’.

​5 Safety Rules For Boaters

  1. Stay at least 100 m away from diver-down /alpha flags. Bear in mind that divers often have difficulty estimating distance underwater and could drift away from the flag.
  2. Do not let anyone onto the swim platform while the engine is in gear. Swim platforms tend to be slippery and divers could fall into the propeller.
  3. If you are leading a group of divers, make sure that divers entering the water do not come close to the propeller: they are sharp and dangerous, even when they are not moving.
  4. Allow easy and safe re-boarding.
  5. Before starting the engine, make sure no diver is in the vicinity or under the boat.

​5 Safety Rules For Divers

  1. Always place the diver-down / alpha flag before diving. The flag can be attached to a float or mounted on a vessel and clearly visible from all directions.
  2. Always surface within 50 m of your dive flag.
  3. Use a surface marker buoy if an emergency surfacing far from the diver-down flag is needed.
  4. Watch your buoyancy and avoid uncontrolled ascents.
  5. While ascending, look around and pay utmost attention.

You Can Get Involved In Various Ways

​Register on the DAN-SA website, log in to your profile and open the Safety Campaigns section. You will be able to:
  • Report an incident or enter your witness
  • Order free campaign atickers and help us spread them around
  • Share your tips & suggestions on how to reduce propeller accidents
This awareness campaign continues in ports and harbours, where we are placing large banners at the entrances, just where boaters can easily see them. The initiative is made possible thanks to the collaboration of local port authorities and coast guards. For further information, and to actively get involved, write us at mail@ dansa.org


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