Rebreather Fatality Investigation.

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Title: Rebreather Fatality Investigation.
Author: Vann, RD; Pollock, NW; Denoble, PJ
Abstract: Sixty-six representatives of rebreather manufacturers, training agencies, government agencies, rebreather users, and DAN met in November 2006 to discuss objectives for rebreather fatality investigations. DAN has collected information on 80 recreational diving rebreather deaths from 1998 through 2006. The annual number of rebreather fatalities appears to have tripled since 1998. The percentage of fatalities involving rebreathers among US and Canadian residents increased from about 1 to 5% of the total number of diving fatalities captured from 1998 through 2004. Rebreather fatality investigations attempt to reduce future occurrences by identifying causative factors, primarily focusing on three areas: medical, equipment, and procedural. Medical investigation dwells on diver health and final cause of death. Equipment investigation addresses potential hardware issues. Procedural problems appear to be more common than equipment problems but are often difficult to identify. Witness reports and 'black box' recordings of rebreather function could help untangle procedural and equipment issues. Enhanced international training and cooperation will facilitate effective incident investigation and, ultimately, the education of the diving community.
Description: American Academy of Underwater Sciences (http://www.aaus.org/)
URI: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/6997
Date: 2007

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