Army divers certified at ‘Deep Blue’

| October 11, 2013 | 0 Comments
A Soldier lowers himself into the water from a logistics support vessel docked at a pier, during Deep Blue, an annual exercise designed to reinforce safety and tactical proficiency during dive operations. Lives depend on the ability of divers to make the right choices in an unforgiving environment.

A Soldier lowers himself into the water from a logistics support vessel docked at a pier, during Deep Blue, an annual exercise designed to reinforce safety and tactical proficiency during dive operations. Lives depend on the ability of divers to make the right choices in an unforgiving environment.

Story and photo by
Staff Sgt. Gaelen Lowers
8th Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs

FORT SHAFTER — The 7th Engineer Dive Detachment, 130th Eng. Brigade, performed a weeklong certification of its diving supervisors during “Deep Blue,” an annual exercise designed to reinforce safety and tactical proficiency, Oct. 1.

The training took place aboard a logistics support vessel docked at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and was in preparation for upcoming evaluations.

“We make sure all of our master divers and dive supervisors are sharp with their skills and protocols, so when they go out with a dive team, they’re successful,” said 1st Sgt. David Chebahtah, detachment senior master diver. “It’s important that we keep all of our divers’ proficiency at the highest levels. Lives depend on it.”

There are as many things that can go wrong when you are at a shallow depth, as there are while deep-sea diving, said Spc. Samuel Schreier, second class diver who was a role player during the scenarios.

“It’s dangerous out there, and this training helps mitigate the possible casualties,” he said. “It’s an intense week of diver casualty scenarios dealing with what could go wrong in and out of the water, and they have to figure out a way to fix those situations. There are a lot of stressful scenarios for them, but if they stay calm and think things through, then they should be able to work through the problems.”

One such scenario included the dive supervisor figuring out how to get two deep-sea divers into the decompression chamber while another diver was occupying it.

Even though the training is designed specifically for the master divers and dive supervisors, all grades and ranks gain from it.

“Although the youngest Soldier here may not be in charge of a dive, he is able to see these scenarios and how the supervisors react to the different situations,” said Chebahtah. “In the event of an actual casualty, he will be better trained and more able to react.

“This is not Army-mandated training,” Chebahtah continued. “(Our detachment) makes it mandatory of all of our divers. Being such a small detachment, we all rely on each other to get their part done and done right. I trust every Soldier on my team.”

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Category: News, Training

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