I’ve decided I want a career as a commercial deep sea diver, but I have no idea where to start. :/
Could someone please give me information on how I become one?
I’m 18 & live in Northern Ireland, UK if that’s any use
There are a few things I need to correct in TJ’s answer.
1/ When you take a commercial dive course you are taught welding, construction techniques, use of tools, pipefitting and also demolition. There are indeed other courses you can take later to hone those skills taught in school but your dive course will give you the basics ( including a weld cert) right off the bat.You’ll come out of the course as employable, although your first year will be spent as a tender and you’ll acquire more skills in that position that you’ll use later as a working diver. Courses and certs that aren’t traditionally taught as part of an entry commercial course are ones such as chamber medic, ROV tech, ROV Pilot, Sat diving and Dive Super.
2/ Most commercial schools ARE employment centres. Right now students are being head hunted before they even get half way to graduation. Most schools have an excellent relationship with both local and international employers and if you aren’t head hunted, they’ll be able to help you find employment.
3/ Forget military service. It means absolutely nothing regards commercial diving. Diddly squat other than you may have some discipline and some scuba experience. What they teach you and what you need to know on civvie street are different. Walk into a commercial school waving your Navy Diver discharge papers and they’ll smile and put "new diver" in the application form if they have space for it. Apples and oranges. Works the same way in reverse too.
How to go about getting into the industry? I assume you’ve graduated from school.
First off, find a school you’re comfortable with and fits your budget. Check their fine print to see if the course costs include things like room and board and a basic gear kit. Those two things alone are worth about $14K so if you see a difference of that order between one school and another..that’s why…check that fine print. If you live at home and attend a course locally your expenses go down considerably. Check to see if you qualify for tuition assistance from your Government. You can save a heck of a lot if you for a program they run.
You’ll need a medical before you start your course. It HAS to be from a Doc who is a specialist in dive medicine. The school you choose will give you a list of the Docs in your area.
If your gear wasn’t included in your tuition, you’ll need to spend about $4K to obtain it. Your school will give you a list of required equipment and will probably give you a list of local dealers. Some schools even hold open house night and dive gear dealers set up shop for the duration of it.
There’s a few small items you’ll also need that no one ever thinks about. PPE gear tops that list. Boots, gloves, ear defenders, glasses, construction hat and a vest. You’re working on a construction site that has safety regulations…gotta have this stuff too and the HSE is tough
I can’t personally vouch for any of the schools in the UK ( I’m Canadian) so I won’t list any but rest assured they will all be good as far as standards are concerned since they must adhere to HSE to be accredited. The individual faculty’s personality or individual school standards aren’t something I’m familiar with so I can’t suggest one facility over another.
Employment prospects? Excellent. Too many retirees and not enough new blood to fill the boots. That’s in the industry as a whole. Some geographic areas do go through employment trend changes though so be prepared to travel and have the appropriate cert for the place you’ll be working. A HSE will get you into most but not all job markets. Every country has differing rules as to dive operations in their jurisdiction. It’s not standardized, which is silly, but I don’t make the rules.
You aren’t limited to off shore work. The inland industry also needs divers. Everything from sewage treatment plants to nuclear power facilities. Many countries have introduced infrastructure make work projects after the economic downturn to help stimulate local economies. There’s a lot of municipal work to be done because of this. New docks, new dams etc.
If there’s anything you need help on that I haven’t mentioned..gimme a holler.