Very easy question to answer. All definitions can generally be found in the Training Standards section of the PADI Instructor Manual.

Need to learn how to navigate the manual more efficiently? Join one of my upcoming Instructor Development Courses.

Instructor Toby has completed his Tech 40-45 and 50 courses. Since he is already certified as a Wreck Instructor and Self-Reliant Instructor he plans to dive a local wreck to gain more technical diving experience.

He draws up a Self-Reliant plan using his additional technical knowledge and submits it to Henrik, the Dive Operations Manager for approval so he may surface support to complete the dive alone.

The plan includes a penetration at 30 metres depth and extends 15 metres into the wreck. The plan also includes planned decompression of 10 minutes and all the required stops to complete the dive dives safely using deco mixes of 50:50 and 100%.

Henrik looks over the plan and informs Toby he cannot allow him to complete this dive.

Is Henrik correct in not allowing Toby to complete the Self-Reliant dive plan he submitted?

Toby’s plan blurs the lines between certifications by attempting to combine them. Dives are always encouraged to dive within the limitations of their training and experience. The fact that Toby is an Instructor doesn’t change that.

The depth of 30 metres and the planned decompression times but not the linear distance inside the wreck or wanting to complete it with surface support.

Technical divers must show self-sufficiency in the case of an emergency but not something they will plan to do. Gas switches are never planned to be performed alone and allowing Toby to do this would be remiss of Henrik’s duties.

Toby’s Wreck certification is also a barrier to his plan. The certification allows up to 40 metres linear distance from the surface and must always be performed in a buddy team.

The Self-Reliant program also has its limitation on Toby’s plan. Maximum depth for this program is 30 metre and is a no-decompression course and must have direct vertical access during all dives.

People may argue that his combination of training and experience makes this plan perfectly viable. Think of it from the point of an event occurring and the severity of that event and whether an insurance provider would see it in the same light.


Cylinder marking can vary from place to place but this one is pretty global. 

The first number denotes the month it was inspected, the second mark will be different every you see it as it is the testers stamp. The last number is the year it was tested.

Check local laws and regulations to see when scuba cylinders must be hydrostatically tested as it varies from country to country. 

This is something that may vary between agencies and whether it is performed by laypersons or in a clinical environment but some while back simplified the process for all Emergency First Responders. 

The ratios are now exactly the same for infant to adult patients and single or multiple responders.

Message me to learn more about upcoming Emergency First Response Instructor courses.

Time to break out your PADI Encyclopedia of Recreational Diving!

You'll find it list the number of tissue compartments used in the design of the PADI Recreational Dive Planner, their washout times and comparisons drawn to other tables and models.


Message me about upcoming PADI professional programs at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and Ignite Your Life today!