Every Open Water student learns that flying and diving do not mix. PADI recommends a 12 hour surface interval before flying after a single dive and an 18 hour surface interval following two or more dives. But how high is too high? What if you need to drive over some hills on the way home from a dive? How high a hill can you drive over before you expose yourself to some risk? The answer is 2,000 ft. Oahu Travel Divers same day return flights are between 1,000 – 2,000 ft. We take safety seriously.
Flying and Diving recommendations from DAN (Divers Alert Network) include the statement that “These guidelines apply to divers who have no symptoms of decompression illness (DCS) and will be flying at cabin altitudes of 2,000 – 8,000 ft (610 to 2,438 meters”.
In another document published by DAN following a workshop on Flying After Recreational Diving in 2002 we read
Finally, a minimum threshold altitude below which guidelines were unnecessary was discussed. Although no data were available that specifically addressed the question, a previous publication had suggested that restrictions were unnecessary below a threshold altitude of 2,300 feet (701 meters) (15). The U.S. Navy Diving Manual had followed this recommendation without apparent problem until introduction of the 1999 procedures that reduced the threshold to 1,000 feet (305 meters) for internal consistency (5). The workshop participants agreed that 2,000 feet (610 meters) was a reasonable, if uncertain, threshold, as no problems with 2,300 feet were cited.Flying After Recreational Diving Workshop Proceedings (pg 12)
Taking Safety Seriously
As Guy Hagi reminds us we enjoy the best weather on the planet. We can go diving on another island and be very confident that our weather will not suddenly change. Here at Oahu Travel Divers we take Flying and Diving recommendations seriously. Safety is of paramount importance to us. It’s nice to know we can travel safely around the beautiful islands of Hawaii. We will not fly unless it is safe to do so.