If you made it this far, you really love diving
The rescue course is the third course in your career as a diver and the last one if you decide to become a professional and make diving your livelihood, because the next one would be the Divemaster course, the first professional course. And if you don’t want to be a professional, you can take other courses to meet your needs, such as a Master Scuba Diver course, or focus on a specialty to continue your training, the highest level in non-professional diving.
As noted elsewhere, you have to be an open water diver to take a rescue course, be at least 15 years old and have taken the first and second aid course (PADI EFR or SSI React Right) within the past two years. If you are between the ages of 12 and 14, you can do a version of the junior rescue course with PADI, and if you have also completed the SSI Advanced Adventurer course with compass, apart from open water.
How much does it cost to take the PADI Rescue Course and SSI Stress and Rescue course?
The course costs between about 280 and 350 euros, depending on the geographic area.
What do the PADI Rescue Course and the SSI Stress and Rescue course consist of?
Once the usual paperwork for diving courses is complete, you will have two or three days of truly new experiences ahead of you.
Classroom and on paper:
With your books in tow, you will need to complete five chapters, with reviews of mandatory knowledge in classroom sessions. This will provide you with the information you need to do the final exam when assigned by your instructor.
You must get at least 75% of the answers right with PADI in the exam, or 80% with SSI (in SSI, you have to attain this before going out to open waters).
You will also have a lot more work on paper, because you will have to prepare an emergency assistance plan for a habitual diving area where you do the course. The plan is very important, because you have to include emergency procedures for possible diving accidents, maps and any related information, and it has to be delivered prior to the end of the course.
Practice and in the water:
Should we do a dive? The first day, you will have to carry out all the exercises in confined waters in the sea, although you can first practice in confined waters like a swimming pool if your instructor decides to do so. This will enable you to react when dealing with a diver who is tired, panicking, conscious or not, with cramps in their legs, or to even use self-protection techniques to avoid putting your own life in danger. You will also do rescue simulations.
You will have to perform all these techniques correctly, and in the coming days you will practice in open water to perfect them, in three or four immersions. You must be aware of the entry and exit points where you are diving, beaches or boats, and their emergency systems in the event of an accident, and know where 100% oxygen equipment is available so you can supply it correctly.
You will learn to apply different search and rescue methods for a lost diver, and the last day may be devoted to what is popularly known as hell diving, which will test your ability to deal with several problems at the same time: while they are removing your mask, your fins, your partner has cramps, or another is unconscious. This will show if you can properly handle the stress and if you are ready to pass the course.
What kind of certification will I get?
If you reach your goal, you will have a diving search and rescue certification that is valid throughout the world. But the most important thing is that you must be aware that you now have great responsibility in any diving activity or outside it; now, you can help people whenever they need it, if your training has prepared you.
This course is quite serious, and you need to be mindful of that. Remember to refresh your know-how if you haven’t used your skills for some time, and always dive safely.
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