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Shearwater NERD 2 for Public Safety Diving: Safety & Efficiency

November 30, 2019


This type of technology basically provides us with a more efficient way of getting our information without having to stop, pull up a gauge, press a backlight while we tell topside that “hey we have 2000 psi” for example left. It enables us to just have it in front of our face providing a higher level of safety, continuing our search, it just allows us to do all these things without having to impede our process by using something that’s not backlit, or something that’s not right in front of our face. We are in charge of basically going on dive calls any water related call – so if we have a car in the water or you know someone that’s a possible drowning victim, we respond to that. If it’s under an hour we’ll try to rescue the person. If not, we’ll go in there and do our best to recover the victim and provide some closure for the family. Public safety divers really have to be thinking about the use of our our hands and our ability to use something, so when we find a victim we don’t have to think about putting our computer away. We don’t have to think about things dangling getting in the way. Because we want to be able to efficiently get that person from the bottom and get them up. That window of opportunity is so key to get them to the surface, and so, I think for a public safety diving teams the ability to get more hands-free is just essential and the NERD 2 I think does that for us. It’s really helped with our search patterns. Using that compass and trying to put it out there far enough so you can see it, it’s a it’s kind of a hard thing, and all of a sudden now you have it in your heads-up display and you know which way you’re going right from the start. And all of a sudden we get an air check and we got to reach in our pocket and pull out our, you know our air and figure out where that’s at and give an air check. Meanwhile, we’re on the bottom the silt is coming up, we’ve lost our buoyancy and all of a sudden we’ve we can’t see and you can’t search. You’ve just disturbed your whole environment. Five-minute air check – it’s right there. You know, you just say, “I got 2500 pounds” and you just keep going. Whenever we do a dive operation there’s always someone on topside, we have underwater communications and we’re able to relay information so that they can keep track of where we’re at, how our air consumption is, do we need anything? And having the NERD 2 has allowed us to basically relay that information more quickly, more efficiently, and it’s safer for everybody. We can range from, you know twenty feet of visibility in really good times, to can’t see your hand in front of your face. It can get pretty frustrating and down there trying to figure out your air and figure out the stuff that topside wants to know. And now with the NERD’s, it’s just, it’s right there. It’s bright just like a screen off in the distance. In the past we’ve had a battery operated computer, but we had to change out the batteries so it’s kind of a pain, logistically we’d have to take the computer apart add a new battery. With this it has a rechargeable system, and it’s been very reliable. If we need to charge it you just throw in the little USB charger, charge it up quickly, and then you’re ready to go again. We are required to actually submit dive logs. With this, you know, you can just download it to your Shearwater app on your cell phone. And it’s been easy to use. It’s very user friendly and it just works well. I think that it is kind of the next step in our ability to use our hands freely, to all of a sudden to think “Oh now I can use both hands for rescue”. When I go to rescue I don’t have to worry about on my ascent, checking my computer as I’m going, looking at my ascent rate, looking at my pressure. I got both hands for a victim and I think that once we get into that mindset of using the technology like that it’s going to be a no-brainer and guys are going to be really comfortable with it and glad that we have it. For me personally it adds a level of comfort maybe not having the NERD 2 wouldn’t. Being able to mitigate the risk while still having all the information there without having to reach down and worry about one less thing, is one of the biggest things I like about the NERD 2.

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1 Comment

  • Reply African Twin May 14, 2019 at 10:40 am

    I was hoping for some new affordable dive computers in 2019 from shearwater to come out in the price range of MAX 500 euro

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