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STH Diving Principles

Underwater cleaning, which stands out as the most important focus of STH studies, is basically done to create a database through sampling and inventory recording. In addition, on a project basis (STH Harem Beach Cleaning, Rehabilitation and Protection Project), complete cleaning works may be in question.

Volunteers who want to take part in underwater teams;

  1. They must have attended the Event Preparation Meeting and the Diving Briefing, They must have and submit a valid certificate documenting the minimum dive level declared for each dive.
  2. STH dives are performed under challenging conditions such as limited visibility, current, low temperature. In both cases, there are certain conditions that volunteers on STH underwater teams must consider.

The points where the event is organized are evaluated in 3 different risk groups in terms of STH.

Group I:

These are high-risk dive sites. (Eminönü, Karaköy, etc.) Underwater teams are determined from among the applications as a result of the evaluation made by the Board of Directors. Areas that require special working conditions are also evaluated in this group.

II. Group:

They are risky dive sites. (Harem, Kadıköy, etc.) For underwater teams, considering the characteristics of the point in question, the minimum qualification level is determined and applications are evaluated from this perspective.

III. Group:

These are the points where the environment and environmental conditions are suitable (Caddebostan, Suadiye etc.). Except for the certificate requirement, the minimum level requirement is not applied.

Before Diving:

  • In all STH dives, the diving partner system is essential and there is no exceptional condition.
  • It is mandatory to attend the dive briefing held at the event point. Otherwise, diving cannot be allowed.
  • Every volunteer to take part in the underwater team has to read and sign the certificate of success. Otherwise, diving cannot be allowed.
  • Minimum certificate levels are determined according to the activity points. Volunteers with a certificate below the specified level cannot be allowed to dive regardless of their number of dives and their experience.
  • An underwater doctor supports each activity. In addition, an Emergency Team produces emergency scenarios and plans according to the activity point and is ready at the activity point.
  • All kinds of authority and responsibility regarding the dives belong to the dive supervisor.

Dive Plan:

  • Diving plan at all activity points is prepared after the exploration work.
  • The number of divers is determined according to the characteristics of the activity point.
  • Whether the dives are boat or shore dives are determined according to the activity point and possibilities.
  • The diving plan and environmental conditions are explained in detail to the volunteers at the pre-event preparation meeting.
  • Diving groups, group leaders and dive partners are determined by the dive supervisor according to the activity point and the level of the divers.
  • Only one sack is given to each pair of divers and they have to work together. According to the activity point, either normal sacks or sacks that can be viewed from the shore with a guide rope are used.
  • The maximum time for winter dives is 20 minutes.

Diving Equipment:

  • Diving with defective or missing equipment is not allowed.
  • All kinds of equipment are supplied by STH if the equipment deficiencies are stated in the participation form filled by the volunteers. (In particular, there may be problems in the supply of equipment such as clothes and booties.)
  • Some additional equipment (horn, shaker, lantern, knife, etc.) is mandatory at necessary points, otherwise diving cannot be allowed.
  • The necessary equipment for cleaning work is supplied by STH.
  • Specific studies Necessary equipment (heavy parts, nets, etc.) is supplied by STH. Gloves are especially recommended for the divers who take part in the cleaning teams.
  • The water temperature varies between 6 -12 C degrees during the winter dives. Therefore, if possible, underwear is recommended in addition to the normal dress, if not a dry dress.

Underwater Studies:

  • In STH dives, your buoyancy is your most important equipment.
  • At many points, vision is lost as soon as it comes into contact with the bottom. For this reason, it is necessary to work in an upside down position with the pallets upside down in order to ensure consistent buoyancy and to avoid contact with the underwater floor as much as possible.
  • The goal is to work as carefully and slowly as possible.
  • During the dive, the weight of the collected garbage makes buoyancy control continuous and important.
  • Personal equipment must be in a safe position. Care should be taken not to snag it. Maximum effort should be made not to damage the ecosystem during the work, especially care should be taken not to drag the filled sacks away. Considering this detail while doing the cleaning work, it should not be expected that the sack is completely filled when necessary.
  • Especially when using guided sacks, it must be ensured that the contact of the sacks with the base is minimized by accompanying the sacks.
  • Sharp and piercing objects should be collected with a different sack etc. for safety.

Materials to be collected primarily:

  • Plastics, especially plastic bags
  • Textiles, sacks, etc.
  • Fishing nets, lines and traps
  • Batteries, car batteries, lifeless bottles and cans
  • Cigarette butts and bottle caps
  • Metal components

Materials that should definitely not be removed:

  • Objects covered with marine life should not be removed unless sure of their necessity. In such cases, mark the object if possible.
  • Do not take any material that you think may be dangerous. If possible, mark the location.
  • Do not use your BC to lift heavy objects.
  • Be sure to leave materials that you suspect may contain toxic substances. If possible, mark the location.
  • Objects that are fused with the base and may contribute to underwater life should never be removed.

Control of the Materials to be Extracted:

  • Check if every object to be removed is alive in it.
  • Clean the organisms around the materials to be removed.
  • If possible, open the cans and make sure that there is no life in them.

Lines and Nets:

  • Never try to save lines by pulling. In order not to damage the ecosystem around it, cut it into sections.
  • Take care to use scissors, etc. rather than a knife.
  • Wrap the line around an object to control it.

After Diving:

  • Please share your general observations about diving by participating in the debrief.
  • Inform the dive supervisor if there are some problems experienced.
  • Special impressions you get during the dive; a material that cannot be extracted, a formation that interests you, etc. Share your personal impressions.
  • Contribute to the secondary security mechanism to be created through debriefs.

Each debrief is reported by the diving supervisor and added to the STH archive.