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Buddy diving

A Navy buddy diver team checking their gauges together

Buddy diving is the use of the buddy system by scuba divers. It is a set of safety procedures intended to improve the chances of avoiding or surviving accidents in or under water by having divers dive in a group of two or sometimes three. When using the buddy system, members of the group dive together and co-operate with each other, so that they can help or rescue each other in the event of an emergency.[1] This is most effective if both divers are competent in all relevant skills and sufficiently aware of the situation that they can respond in time, which is a matter of both attitude and competence.[2]

In recreational diving, a pair of divers is usually considered best for buddy diving. With threesomes, one diver can easily lose the attention of the other two, and groups of more than three divers are not using the buddy system. The system is likely to be effective in mitigating out-of-air emergencies, non-diving medical emergencies and entrapment in ropes or nets. When used with the buddy check it can help avoid the omission, misuse and failure of diving equipment.

The buddy system is the situation which occurs when two divers of similar interest and equal experience and ability share a dive, continuously monitoring each other throughout the entry, the dive and the exit, and remaining within such distance that they could render immediate assistance to each other if required.[1]

— Bob Halstead, Line dancing and the buddy system

In technical diving activities such as cave diving, threesomes are considered an acceptable practice.[3] This is usually referred to as team diving to distinguish it from buddy diving in pairs.

When professional divers dive as buddy pairs their responsibility to each other is specified as part of standard operating procedures, code of practice or governing legislation.

  1. ^ a b Cite error: The named reference SPUMShalstead was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ Cite error: The named reference Powell 2011 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference exley was invoked but never defined (see the help page).