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Old 07 January 2015, 10:25   #21
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Agree! I think the current A flag is ample if people know just what it means? 'Divers down, keep clear & at low speed'
I have seen over many years, even BSAC dive boats displaying their flag whilst underway or even when they have returned to the slipway. They just forget sometimes. One time we arrived on a dive site with a huge rib (commercial operator) who had divers down & no flag whatsoever displayed! I mentioned to the Cox'n & he just shrugged his shoulders! I think in a court of law he would be procecuted!
The majority of the boating public do not know what the red & white international flag or the blue & white 'A' flag means, so education, education, education etc.

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Old 07 January 2015, 11:18   #22
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i was once up e tree cutting a large branch off when I saw a woman directly below shouting up at me I stopped cutting turned the chainsaw off she said can I come through here I shook my head and said no that's why we have a fence 50m around it with a sign every 5m saying tree felling do not enter! People just don't think before they act typical one is drivers runing red lights on level crossings.

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Old 07 January 2015, 11:26   #23
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Clarification of my earlier post: California does not require dive ops to have a flag to be flown (alpha or diver down.) If you choose to do so, it, by law has to be a "rigid, 1 meter replica, visible from any angle" (I suspect this is for the alpha flag, and for commercial dive ops - hardhat divers.) That would mean 3 one meter by .83 meter boards or similar, mounted in a triangle - a little unwieldy for the average recreational boater. Flying both doubles that to an alpha and diver down triple replica.

Flying a dive flag of any sort while underway (i.e. not diving) is citeable. $76 if you get popped.

Other boaters are advised to use caution around boats flying a flag, but are not required to. An accident on the offending boats part leaves them subject to a $135 fine.

Short version: California law as it pertains to recreational diving is in serious need of a rewrite.

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Old 07 January 2015, 11:39   #24
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Maybe just me, but I am left wondering why the flag has three red lines rather than a closed triangle.

The warning triangles I'm familiar with are all closed shapes. <shrug/>
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Old 07 January 2015, 12:19   #25
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Originally Posted by Chunk View Post
I'm not saying I'm in favour or against the design, just that I think what we have today doesn't work and it may be time to look at alternatives.
Originally Posted by gtb View Post
Maybe just me, but I am left wondering why the flag has three red lines rather than a closed triangle.

The warning triangles I'm familiar with are all closed shapes. <shrug/>
Not just you. If they want it to be "immediately recognisable" then use the standard shape - not a butchered triangle. Actually they would be probably be better with a Yellow/Black triangle as per industrial safety rather than red/white we see on the roads.

I think it would also be interesting to measure whether a simple (!) in triangle (simple non specific warning) rather than a picture people are trying to interpret was more effective. If there was a 1m high black / yellow (!) triangle on a boat I certainly wouldn't be getting too close...

However I think it is irrelevant as I am sure many of the people who go too close do know what the flag means - or can make a pretty good guess if asked to think about it for a minute - they just aren't looking out for it, and are in their own wee zone enjoying their day out.
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Old 07 January 2015, 12:21   #26
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I dont know what its like overseas but I know here I still get guys blatting by. I think half the battle is education.
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Old 07 January 2015, 13:18   #27
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Nothing wrong with the "A" flag, and its re-enforced within maritime law. As others have said its education... as well as observation..
Brian C
Harbour Sea School & APS Marine Centre
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Old 07 January 2015, 17:03   #28
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This is how I let other boater know there is/are a diver(s) down...
In my opnion the only way it should be...
And yes, take it away when everybody is on board..
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Old 07 January 2015, 18:44   #29
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Even as a diver myself I can't see the point of a new flag other than as a money making exercise for the company.
I fly a medium sized A flag from the top of the A frame when diving anywhere I think it may be required. If I think there will be a lot of traffic I change it to a full ship size one which is about a 1/3 of the length of the RIB, nobody misses that one!
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Old 08 January 2015, 02:51   #30
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A lot of negative comments directed at boat users on this topic, I agree with education, education, education bit and dont really think the flag needs re inventing. However I do think that the education bit also applies to the dive boat operators, I see many dive operations around swanage bay and very often the dive boats will be flying the diver down flag but are also very often quite a way from the actuall divers due to drift dives and the need to pick up multiple divers.

So my point is the dive flag isnt much good if the dive boat is say for example in middle of swanage bay and the actual divers are spread out and could be as far away as say just off old harry rocks, any leisure boaters coming from poole end will not see the dive boat and flag, often they don't see the divers until very late.

so more than one issue on this, flags are no use if no where near the actual diver.

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