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  1. #1

    Default A controversial concept, but maybe a good one.

    I know you guys are all thankful that I don't post much anymore. And I'll try to keep it that way. But a discussion with a cave instructor this morning led to a great idea we think he had. Of course, proposal of said idea would probably bring a bunch of criticism. I don't really care about criticism, so I said I'd post it.

    What if cave society and prospective new cave divers had a list of instructors that not only had their length of cave instruction but also listed the number of graduated students who have died in cave diving. Say you've been teaching cave diving for less than 6 years but have already had 3+ students die while cave diving. Maybe it shows a trend in either poor instruction or an inability to weed out a poor state of mind in a diver.

    Worst case, it allows people thinking about entering the sport to evaluate whether they want a guy known for student deaths to be their instructor.

    Whatcha think?

  2. #2


    too early for popcorn...hmmm...too fat for donuts...hmmm....this should be good. Just can't figure out the right snack.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    St Petersburg, FL


    Obviously that happens on a small scale as when we're asked who's a good instructor, we give our opinion based on some of those facts we know. Unfortunately a lot of crappy instructors or what I would say are "unsafe" instructors still get recommended by others. So I think your idea is a good one. Unfortunately, I think that in today's society there could be a legal issue as that could be seen as an unfair practice. Though it would be based in fact, I think there's still the precedent for legal concern.

    How about instructors are required to have a certain amount of continuing education where they take courses or are "re-certified" by another instructor. Ideally not a croney or buddy, but that's hard to stop.

    I have alot of respect for instructors who go take some basic classes like fundies eventhough they really have no need to.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Panama City Beach, Fl.


    I have wondered about this by agency vs the number of students certified. It seems to me that lately one agency is having a high percentage of deaths vs the number of certifications that are issued. Per the CDS bylaws they are supposed to maintain records for analysis of trends. It would be interesting to see and I think could be very valuable to the community. Sadly it will probably never happen.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Right on the Ragged Edge


    Look, blaming the instructor for the bunny brained ideas of a student is stupid. An instructor sees a diver for the duration of their class, and has a set of standards that the student has to meet. Years later, the student may go bat crap crazy and ignore everything he was taught. Or have some testicular swelling that causes him to go far beyond his training and abilities. Or move to the frozen north and only cave dive every other year. That is not the fault of the instructor, or as important, the certifying agency.

    And Krazi - the proper snack for this type of trolling is a banana.

    "Those who the gods seek to destroy, first learn how to play golf."
    "Doing nothing is very hard to do.... you never know when you're finished."
    "Yes, golf can be taught ... it's just that it can't be learned."
    " I am serious.... and don't all me Shirley."

    Leslie Nielsen 11-28-2010

    "Into the blue again; in the silent water
    Under the rocks, and stones; there is water underground" Talking Heads

  6. #6


    I'll start. I started cave diving in 1997. Bill Rennaker was my instructor. I started teaching about 7 years ago. I have had zero students die (certing about 200 students, most still active)

  7. #7


    I have yet to had a single student die or fail for that matter. Never mind that I’m not an instructor, I still have a perfect record.

  8. #8


    i'm sure agencies and instructors will be all for this idea. i expect it to be implemented any day now

  9. #9


    Many divers have had multiple instructors while progressing (cavern, intro, ANDP, full cavern, sidemount, CCR, DPV, trimix etc). Who gets the blame if the diver has a medical event or does something stupid that none taught or recommended?

  10. #10


    If we want to evaluate an instructors judgment can we also discuss instructors that have been thrown out of certification agencies, instructors that have stolen things, instructors that are drug addicts, and instructors that associate with convicted pedophiles?

    Or do we have to evaluate an instructor based solely on the actions of a former student days/weeks/months/years after that former student took a class?

    Ken Sallot


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