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#4241 - 05/14/01 01:42 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
Narcosis Offline
avid diver

Registered: 04/29/01
Posts: 8
scuba1066,
Dont give up diving Lakes because of 1 bad dive. You will be missing out on some of the best diving there is. I have dove over a couple hundred dives in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River on shipwrecks with vis from 20-75ft. Majority of the time its around 50ft thanks to the population of Zebra Mussels. There's nothing like it, I love doing research on ships that I plan on diving so that when you end up on top of them all this knowledge starts running through your head about how it went down, the lives that were lost, the artifacts that were left behind. I dive Key Largo and Grand Caymans every year and there is no way that wrecks or reefs in warm water could keep me away from cold water wreck diving. Oh one other thing 1000 Islands area of the St. Lawrence reaches 73-75f in the summer months.
So dont give up, you'll be missing out. I do have a question for you, I dont know wether I read it right or not but why would 5 foot vis be a problem for someone who has been diving caves for 10 years or why would you need to take another scuba course?

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#4242 - 05/14/01 04:54 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
scuba1066 Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 230
Loc: Oneida, NY
No,
I was a caver, NOT a cave DIVER! It just scarde me to think that our 1st dive EVER is a real environment was going to be in such poor visibility - coupled with mask flooding and clearing in such conditions.

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#4243 - 05/14/01 04:57 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
scuba1066 Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 230
Loc: Oneida, NY
We have contacted the YMCA is Georgia about obtaining a 'Universal Referral' since our instructor said that he cannot give us one unless we were to go OUT OF TOWN to do our check out dives.

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#4244 - 05/14/01 06:43 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
SGHOWE Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/04/01
Posts: 81
Loc: Ashton, Maryland, USA
Your instructor is FULL OF ***! There is no rule anywhere that I know of that says you can only get a refferal if you are going out of town. On the refferal forms for PADI (and I would guess all of the other agencies) the portion that your original instructor fills out has nothing whatsoever to do with where you are doing your certifying dives. If it had anything to do with them you wouldn't need to have a letter of refferal. Tell this liar to cut the shit and give you a refferal letter. Or you could play his game and tell him that you have a trip planned somewhere

[This message has been edited by EricF (edited 05-16-2001).]


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#4245 - 05/15/01 06:03 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
scuba1066 Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 230
Loc: Oneida, NY
I tried that - he said that I would have to be in FLA. and the dive agancy would then have to call him for the Universal Referral...I said "Yeah, I'm gonna buy a plane ticket, fly to FLA, book hotel reservations, and THEN have them call you? I don't think so." YMCA called today to say that they have received my request and the Director has been spoken to about it and "they are working on it." No reply as to IF they WILL or WILL NOT comply. Can't tell you how this has soured me from the entire SCUBA industry so far - total lack or respect for MY rights as a diver to abort ANY dive, for ANY reason, ANY day or ANY time...totally unprofessional of this firm Aqua Hutt Divers in Scotia, NY. BEWARE!!

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#4246 - 05/15/01 06:27 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
daver Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/09/01
Posts: 34
Loc: Overland Park, KS USA
That place sounds like a real piece of crap, never go there again and find another dive shop

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#4247 - 05/16/01 02:59 AM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
scuba1066 Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 230
Loc: Oneida, NY
Thanks juts what I am doing - going to a DIR and PADI agency that came highly recommended to me in Brooklyn, NY called Scuba Devine as soon as I get my Universal Referral...thanks all...

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#4248 - 05/16/01 07:30 AM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
TexasMike Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/02/01
Posts: 301
If it were me, I'd consider writing a properly worded letter to the agency (PADI, NAUI, or whoever) certified this instructor explaining why you are not happy with the situation. Sounds like this person needs to be held accountable to the standards set forth by that agency.

Be sure to include his certification number along with just the facts (aka, keep the emotion to a minimum) and aim the letter more towards informing them and letting them take the appropriate action, rather than asking to have his ticket yanked.

Oh, and be sure to CC: both the shop, the shop's director of teaching, and the instructor.

--Mike


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#4249 - 05/16/01 06:14 PM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
Toothpickman Offline
veteran

Registered: 03/08/01
Posts: 116
I hate to tell you all this, but the majority of lakes here, in the midwest do NOT have good visibility. New divers ARE certified in them for the reason that is where they will be diving. It is NOT that the instructor is bad. Maybe not so many people are up for diving, but those that are, practice safe diving, and are good divers. If you want very clear diving, you have to go to the ocean, and that is good and well, but it is NOT the only place to dive. Sorry if you don't like lake diving, but some of us do. And depending on the time of year you are going diving 5 ft visibility is not uncommon, and does not mean the lake is "a piece of crap" as daver has deemed

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#4250 - 05/17/01 01:13 AM Re: WARNING: Choose your instructor carefully!
jmsdiver Offline
veteran

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 169
Loc: USA
According to the information set forth here, I would say that this instructor didn't have his logistics worked out very well. This instructor should be held accountable to the standards set forth by his certifying agency. I agree with TexasMike about writing a carefully worded detailed account of what transpired and send a copy to the agency, the store, and others that may need to be informed about this.

I have to agree with the fact that one must feel at ease with their instructor and the addtional staff (i.e. other instructors and divemasters/dive cons) that may be assisting. The creation of that ease is done in the first few minutes/sessions/meetings that on has with that instructor. First impressions go a long way. But, one still needs to research and ask questions (i.e. may I see your instructor certification? How long have you been teaching? etc). One has to be accountable for their actions. Also, one needs to trust their lives to that instructor. I look at people and ask: would I trust this person tending my line while ice diving? If the answer is no, then it's no.

I have been diving in the midwest since 1988 and just love it. I can't afford to go to the carribbean or where ever just to do a warm water dive every year. I love diving, I love the serenity and peacefulness, and there's a world of opportunities in my backyard. Lake Superior (or any of the Great Lakes) offer a myriad of shipwrecks to explore; it's just an awesome experience to drift down upon a majestic steel or wooden testament to human diligence, history, and sacrafice. The water is cold (36 on a recent dive), the vis is 50 feet or better, and surface conditions can change during the dive. On the flip side, I also dive in a quarry that has 5 feet of vis on a good day. With vis conditions like that, it gives one a chance to practice skills and test the comfort level.

I don't think that people dismiss scuba in the numbers that have been posted because of their initial in-water experience; most people dismiss scuba because of their experience with the store and instructing staff. Customer service, upbeat personalities, and true concern for others goes a long ways in keeping divers diving.

I hope that your diving experiences continue and that you will revisit local lake diving. There's an adventure waiting for you in your backyard.

[This message has been edited by jmsdiver (edited 05-17-2001).]


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