Learning Scuba Diving
Romsey SAC successfully bid for a lottery grant in 2004 to purchase four complete sets of Scuba equipment. Including suits, stab-jackets, regulators, cylinders etc. This equipment is available to new members that are undergoing their Ocean Diver training. This brings a number of benefits. Firstly, scuba equipment is expensive (~£1,200) and this allows a trainee to purchase their own equipment over several months reducing the impact of a single large spend. Secondly, a new trainee may be unsure of the underwater environment and therefore this equipment enables a trainee to experience diving to find-out if they like it as a sport or not. Thirdly, this allows us to easily provide Try-dives, so that members of the local community can experience diving in the secure confines of a swimming pool.
Once a trainee has been hooked on the sport of scuba diving. Romsey SAC would expect that a diver would purchase their own equipment. The club scuba equipment remains available (for example, as a back-up when ones own regulator is in for service). A hire charge would then be made to the diver.
Romsey SAC has other equipment to assist with diving, like the Emergency O2 equipment or the Rescusi Annie for AV/CPR training. This pool of equipment enables a safer diving environment and a reduced cost of diving to individual members.
Boat and Equipment
Romsey SAC purchased a new rigid-hulled inflatable boat and trailer in 2005. The RIB is a 5.8 Metre deep-V sports-boat and can hold a maximum of 7 divers and a coxswain. The boat was purchased with a 100 litre in-board fuel tank that allows the RIB a maximum off-shore range of 15 miles.
The engine was purchased in 2008 and is one of the latest major investments the committee has made into the club. Through the hardwork of the 2007 committee Romsey SAC was awarded a lottery grant that went some way towards the purchase of a Suzuki engine, propeller and engine management gauges. Romsey SAC thanks the Lottery Fund for assistance with this asset.
A new set of electronics has been placed on the the boat in 2008. A large amount of research had been undertaken to obtain the best sounding device that was integral to a colour chartplotter. Therefore, Romsey SAC owns a Lowrance 9200c with broadband sonar, heading sensor and weather station.
The Safety Equipment
When the boat leaves the shore, a full complement of safety equipment is installed. The boat carries:
- Oxygen equipment
- DSC VHF radio
- Tools and engine parts
- spare fuel tank
- battery leads
Safety of use is most important to the club. Boats and swimmers is a dangerous combination especially if there are multiple diving parties and multiple boats on a dive site. Therefore, all coxswains are qualified to the “BSAC Boat handling” certificate and need to be assess by the Diving Officer. Boat-Handlers are encouraged to take their “Diver Coxswain” Exam, and “Chartwork and Position fixing” courses.
Romsey SAC has the use of a very good RIB. Romsey SAC maintains and services all equipment annually so that the RIB is ready to go. The RIB and its on-board equipment are fully insured each year, with the additional benefit that the RIB’s kept on a hard in a Dorset marina, with 24hr security and range of locking devices.
Romsey SAC is a non-profit making club. All of our activities are made possible by our volunteers, from the committee members, our instructors and members. Therefore, most of our money each year is spent on club equipment that falls within the following categories:
- pool hire
Our sources of finance has been from the membership through subscriptions and lottery funding where possible. Over the years Romsey SAC has transformed itself in terms of accounting. The club has a steady financial footing, has plans for the future whilst achieving its annual maintenance and insurance responsibilities.