Do you still know, remember the Buddy Check / Predive Safety Check?
No, not a body check of your partner, we are serious, we are talking about the ‘buddy check’ / Predive Safety Check. Before every dive you should do the buddy check. It is so important.
With a proper buddy check you make sure the equipment of your dive buddy is properly functioning and in place. The same for your equipment. You might have done your equipment check. But there is the slight possibility you forgot something. To avoid this divers have made up a simple formula that is also being taught by PADI. You should actually know this from your Open Water course.
Do you still remember the B W R A F ? You can alternatively use an easy to remember phrase like Bangkok’s Women Really Are Friendly… And for sure they are! Now, what do all these letters stand for?
Check if the BCD is in order and if it’s working properly. Inflate the BCD completely and check all the releases.
Is there a weight belt or another weight system? Can you open the buckle with your right hand? In case of a weight integrated BCD, check how the quick release works.
Are the releases and buckles working as they should. Make sure you are familiar with the releases of your own and your buddy’s gear. Also make sure the major releases (shoulder, belly, tank) are closed. Is the tank strap tight enough or does it slip if you try to move it?
If you check the air it is important you do this in the right order. First you have to check if the tank is open. It is crucial to do this first. Now you can check the pressure gage. Is there enough air? Let your buddy breathe from his regulator while you watch the pressure gauge. If the needle is moving, something is wrong. Maybe the tank was already open and you closed it accidentally.
You see now why it is so important to check the tank first. If you check the regulator and pressure gage first and the tank later, there is the slight chance you close an open tank.
Take the alternate air source, breathe from it and observe the pressure gauge.
Finally check if your buddy has his ABC (mask, snorkel and fins) and other needed equipment. After being sure that all of this gear is in place you can give the “OKAY” signal.
Now you are ready to jump off the boat and enjoy tropical reef life.