Scuba Diving

1932 Words May 27th, 2002 8 Pages
Many people think of scuba diving as just a swim in the water, but in reality it is a very exciting, dangerous, and potentially fatal sport and activity. There are many types of scuba diving, ranging from recreational to sport to career diving. Scuba Diving is just not a swim in the water, scuba requires certification, uses technical equipment, and there is a lot of risk involved with scuba diving. Scuba, which is actually an acronym for "self-contained breathing apparatus",
Allows divers to dive deeper and stay submerged longer. Scuba comes a long way from other forms of diving by using an air-tank and regulator. This is what allows them to stay under longer and dive deeper. Scuba originally began with military and
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To breathe under-water, scuba divers wear a metal tank filled with compressed air, and a regulator that attaches to the tank. The regulator reduces the pressure of the air to match the surrounding water pressure, so that the diver can breathe the air comfortably. The regulator also distributes the air among four hoses. One hose delivers air to a mouthpiece, through which the diver inhales and exhales. Another hose from the regulator attaches to an adjustable air bladder called a Buoyancy Compensator devise, which the diver wears as a vest. By adding air to the BCD, the diver becomes more buoyant and rises, by releasing air, the diver becomes less buoyant and sinks. With minor adjustments of air, the diver can achieve neutral buoyancy. A third hose attaches to pressure gauges that divers use to monitor how much air remains in the tank. A fourth hose attaches to a backup breathing device called an alternate source, or octopus. Divers also wear a belt with lead weights to help them descend and stay underwater. The weights are spaced evenly around the belt for balance. Most divers carry from 5 to 20 pounds of weight, depending on their body weight, the suit they are wearing, and where they are diving. A quick-release buckle enables the diver to shed the belt and rise to the surface in an emergency. Emergency equipment includes a dive knife, in case the diver becomes entangled in fishing line or marine plants, and whistles, lights, or signaling devices, in case the
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