February 2019

MUD Club
Next Meeting: Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Andrews University, Biology Amphitheater, Price Hall
Berrien Springs, MI

Meeting starts at 7:30 p.m.
(3rd Tuesday of every month except December)

February Meeting:

Normal Meeting sequence is as follows:

1. Introduce Visitors.
2. Present Specific Club Information
2019 DUES are DUE!
Pay at the meeting or send your dues to:
Ric Kling, 5191 Territorial Road, Benton Harbor, MI 49022.
Make the check out to Ric and note it is for 2019 MUD dues.

3. Identify dive events upcoming or planned. (Dives & Road Trips)
Great Lakes Shipwrecks – March 2 Sportsman Club -TBD
4. Identify & discuss diving-related news important to divers.
5. Present any Show & Tell.
6. Attendees speak about current diving experiences or lessons learned.
*Kevin’s presentation (1-24) at SASS (Battle Creek) on Adaptive Diver.
*Hope to hear about OWU by attendees & the Water/Ways Expo at Niles Library
*Polar Plunge by John Nedoba * Poor Scuba Survey responses *Plus more “stuff”
*Mermaid Mega fest June 14-16, 2019 Mermaid Safety Assistance again?
7. Open session.

January Meeting Highlights:
There were 14 members at the meeting and no visitors. Primary event was collection of dues and identification of 2019 Officers. Other items discussed or reviewed included:
Talked about the New Year predive and the New Year midnight dive in Paw Paw Lake, Watervliet. Bob Sweeney talked about the Jan 1st dive at Gilboa quarry, one on the 5th in Lake 16 with Rob L & Ted T, and another Jan 13 by the South Pier in St. Joseph/ Lake Michigan. Talked about newsletter article on “Panic Diver”, Kevin Ailes spoke about buoying project objectives for 2019; Jim Scholz spoke about the Clay Banks and Fisherman’s Reef which had some interest by the State.

2019 Diver Related Events:

For those looking for a dive or dive buddy, keep checking in and updating the MUD Club Facebook site for “Thrill of the Chill” dives.

Check out these dive shops and their web sites that Muddy Divers use:
Wolf’s Marine Dive Shop, Benton Harbor, MI
Sub Aquatic Sports & Service, Battle Creek, MI
Divers Inc., Ann Arbor, MI
Hart City Scuba, Elkhart, IN
Just Add H2O, South Bend, IN [Michiana Divers]
Altek Sports – West Michigan Adaptive Diving, Zeeland, MI

Divers Corner:     Cold Water Diving
Few things are more shocking to the body than plunging into frigid water. Our sophisticated human machine knows instantly that it’s not where it’s supposed to be and reacts accordingly. Automatically, arteries tighten, blood pressure and heart rate increase, and lungs gasp for air. In as little as five minutes, hyperventilation can occur, while extremities, including arms and legs, begin to lose feeling and the ability to move. As hypothermia sets in, the tongue swells and thoughts become cloudy as the body begins to lose its battle to focus blood flow to vital organs. A loss of consciousness follows, and it’s not hard to imagine how the story ends.

Thankfully, technology and training have advanced throughout the evolution of diving to make submersion in hostile environments possible — and even safe. Durable dry suits made from tough materials, silicone sealing systems that really keep the water out, advanced life-support systems designed to resist freezing and heated undergarments that can keep body- core temperatures at near summertime levels can make cold-water diving seem like a dip in the Caribbean. (Well, Almost.)

The key to effective planning is a good understanding of the impact of cold stressors on the diver and the limitations of thermal protective choices. Armed with this knowledge the planner needs to consider thermal protection strategies for four separate regions of the body (hands, feet, trunk and limbs, and head), each of which have specific requirements.
Barely Functional: Core temperature >95.5°F. Borderline for carrying out basic functions needed to maintain dive safety. Its noted that diver’s comfort deteriorates faster than their functionality. However, if the level of comfort deteriorates rapidly and/or extreme levels of discomfort are reached over time, this distractive effect can take the diver’s mind off task performance and/or safety issues.

The diver must learn that once the hands become uncomfortably cold (68°F) their performance will start to diminish, and an additional degree of cooling may only take minutes. If divers do not terminate the dive at this point, they may enter the realm of Non-freezing cold injuries (NFCI) of their extremities.

Your first step in a successful cold-water dive is using specifically designed equipment that has been properly maintained and regularly serviced. “It is essential to use regulators that are designed for cold-water use.,” “Free-flow can be an issue if you do not have properly serviced equipment.”

Its recommended not to be doing a very cold water or ice dive for the first time in your new dry suit. You need to be comfortable in your gear before trying it a new and harsher environment.

Hoods and gloves are standard fare. “In recent years electrically heated undergarments have become standard equipment and have made a huge difference, comfort wise.” The same for using dry gloves.

A cold-water dive plan should consider variables not present in warm-water diving.
“It is not uncommon for surface air-consumption rates to increase in cold water, oftentimes due to some level of anxiety,” “So it’s good to be aware of this when planning your dive.”
Learning how to handle a free-flowing regulator and being comfortable with air-sharing drills is paramount. Practicing mask clearing and removal in cold water is a good idea, because it’s quite a bit different when that cold water hits your face. “Understand signs of hypothermia and what to do,”. “Also, it is important to be completely comfortable calling the dive when you feel yourself starting to get too cold.”
Key item is to Stay warm before the dive & stay warm while downing your dive gear.

Instead of giant-striding off the platform into 50-degree water, proceed gradually to allow your system to acclimate. “Slowly allow your body to be introduced to the water. “Shore dives are great for this and allow your breathing rate to stabilize prior to descending.” By avoiding the instant shock of immersion, the body can more safely adjust. “Go slow and allow yourself to get comfortable at each step. Then incrementally increase your depth.”

When your dive is done, raising the body’s core temperature is a primary goal. “First, put on some warm clothes,”. “Hot drinks are great as well.” And remember to glean tips from the other divers in your group. “Having an experienced cold- water diver mentor you are a great benefit,”. “Don’t be afraid of the cold water. It’s simply a matter of using the right equipment, building experience and gaining confidence. It will open the door to some of the best diving in the world.”

Interesting Reading:

So, did you think about how to respond to last month’s questions?
To a diver not returning to the surface as planned?
Wondering where the rebreather diver(s) is (are)?
A diver surfaced and mention’s they just do not feel good?

Plan for the unexpected and think about what you should do in this event.


ANYONE can call off a dive at any time.   It is always OK to say “No”

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