AT THIS time of year, many divers are getting ready for their annual holidays.
Some go through their gear fastidiously while others just pack it all in a bag and hope for the best.
Even when stored in a cool dry place, dive gear is prone to perish.
All rubber products should be checked for wear.
This includes the mask, snorkel and fins.
Any suspect straps should be replaced.
The diver's buoyancy vest should be checked for leaks.
The easiest way to do this is to inflate the vest fully and leave overnight.
If the vest is deflated in the morning it means there is either a leak in the vest or in the inflator mechanism or both.
The air-delivery system needs to be checked to see that it is operating at the correct working pressure.
If the battery in a diver's computer fails during a dive, it could mean the end of the rest of the day's diving.
Batteries for a diver's computer, watch, and underwater light should all be checked.
If in doubt, it is best to install new batteries.
Many dive sites are located in remote locations where technical assistance is often not available.
Divers should have all their gear checked on an annual basis by a factory-trained technician.
By doing this, divers will avoid missing dives due to their gear malfunctioning, or paying unexpected hire fees on the day.