Sarah V. — Tarpon Springs Chapter
I joined SCUBAnauts Intl. in September of 2015. After getting all of the paperwork in order I had to worry about passing the needed certifications to be able to dive with SCUBAnauts. In February I attended the full course for Divers Alert Network Training (DAN) and that course helped prepare me for the SLAM training in March.
SLAM training consisted of a pool day and a open water day. Both days participants were required to bring all of their gear and suit up for a day full of water activities. The first day we had a 4 hour classroom session where we went over the material we would be covering that weekend. Unconscious diver rescue, sharing air, deploying a sausage buoy, and distressed diver were included in said material. All of these skills are necessary for divers to know if there ever is an emergency situation where you are the only one around that can help your dive buddy.
I found giving rescue breaths to an unconscious diver to be one of the most difficult tasks I was required to preform. I have a back bladder BC so when I inflate it all the way to get out of the water more I end up face down in the water. So to administer rescue breaths I have to make sure not to inflate myself too much or else both me and my buddy are in need of assistance.
I enjoyed inflating the sausage buoy the most out of all tasks. I had never used one before and it took me by surprise when the buoy kept on inflating out of the water. Overall I enjoyed SLAM, especially when we were in the water. Classroom time is always the less exciting part of training but it is also the most important part of training.