GUE’s Diver Propulsion Vehicle Level 1 course is designed to introduce divers to the skills and knowledge required to safely use underwater propulsion vehicles in open water. Other course outcomes include: knowledge of the basic principles of DPV diving, dive planning, teamwork while using a DPV, environment and conservation awareness, stress management, navigation, standard and emergency procedures, DPV maintenance and troubleshooting, and the potential hazards of diving with a DPV.
Applicants for a DPV 1 course must:
- Submit a completed registration form, a medical history, and a liability release to GUE Headquarters.
- Be physically and mentally fit.
- Hold insurance that will cover diving emergencies such as hyperbaric treatment, e.g. DAN Master-level insurance or equivalent.
- Be a nonsmoker.
- Obtain a physician’s prior written authorization for the use of prescription drugs, except for birth control, or for any prior medical condition that may pose a risk while diving.
- Be a minimum of sixteen years of age.
- Have passed GUE Recreational Level 1 Diver or GUE Fundamentals at the “Recreational” level.
- Have a minimum of 75-five logged dives beyond either GUE Recreational Diver Level 1 or open water certification.
The DPV 1 course is normally conducted over three days, and includes five dives and a minimum 24 hours of instruction, encompassing classroom, land drills and in-water work.
DPV 1 Specific Training Standards
- Student-to-instructor ratio is not to exceed 6:1 during land drill or surface exercises; ratios cannot exceed 3:1 during any in-water training.
- Maximum depth of 100 feet/30 meters or the limit of the student’s certification, whichever is shallower.
- No overhead environment diving.
- Minimum starting visibility of 20 feet/6 meters.
GUE training materials and recommended reading as determined by the course study packet received via online download after GUE course registration.
- Introduction: GUE organization and course overview (objectives, limits, expectations)
- Equipment considerations
- DPV components
- DPV maintenance
- Surface marker buoys and spools (for deco platforms)
- Dive planning
- Operational planning
- Team planning
- Gas planning
- Gas matching
- Considerations for managing and stowing a DPV while not in use
- Proper position while using a DPV
- Runaway DPV
- Dive team order and protocols
- Basic navigation skills
- Pre-dive drills
Required Dive Skills and Drills
- Demonstrate proficiency in safe diving techniques; this would include pre-dive preparations, inwater activity, and post-dive assessment.
- Demonstrate awareness of team member location and concern for safety, responding quickly to visual indications and dive partner needs.
- Demonstrate a safe and responsible demeanor throughout all training.
- Demonstrate proficiency in underwater communication.
- Demonstrate basic proficiency managing a GUE equipment configuration.
- Demonstrate safe ascent and descent procedures.
- Demonstrate good buoyancy and trim, i.e. approximate reference is a maximum of 30 degrees off horizontal while remaining within 5 feet/1.5 meters of a target depth.
- Must be able to swim at least 300 yards/275 meters in less than 14 minutes without stopping. This test should be conducted in a swimsuit and, where necessary, appropriate thermal protection.
- Must be able to swim a distance of at least 50 feet/15 meters on a breath hold while submerged.
- Demonstrate proficiency adjusting buoyancy while using a DPV.
- Demonstrate effective use of compass and navigation.
- Demonstrate ability to match speeds with team members.
- Demonstrate ability to tow a diver with a non-functional DPV.
- Demonstrate control while dealing with a runaway DPV.
- Demonstrate proper procedures for gas-sharing and regulator switching as appropriate.
- Demonstrate proficiency in surface marker buoy deployment.
- Demonstrate familiarity with required course equipment.
- Demonstrate proficiency in gas-sharing scenarios with a gas-sharing event.
- Demonstrate cylinder valve management appropriate to the configuration being used.
- Demonstrate proficiency with effective decompression techniques, including depth and time management.
GUE base configuration as outlined in Appendix A, plus:
- Approved DPV
An approved DPV is one that is tow-behind style with adjustable speed and clutch mechanism. The DPV must include an attached cord at the back with a bolt snap to be clipped on the front crotch-strap D-ring. The DPV should also have a leash attached to the front to be used for towing.
Prior to the commencement of class, students should consult with a GUE representative to verify equipment requirements and appropriateness of any selected equipment.