As divers are seeing the benefit of diving the long hose, more and more scuba divers are switching from short hoses to the long hose configuration. While it is very important to understand how to dive the long hose, it is equally important to know how to manage the long hose when you actually have to deploy it. Many divers new to the long hose have no clue how to actually deploy it, let alone how to manage it once it is fully deployed during an air share.
Once the long hose has been deployed on an air share, you can’t simply forget about it. If you look at the picture above, you’ll see the long hose is left hanging out there. Know what this becomes? Another accident waiting to happen is what it is. As the hose is floating around in the water, it can snag on something (i.e. wreck, rock, coral, etc). Once it snags, it can quickly come out of the out of air (OOA) diver’s mouth. Thus causing another out of air situation.
Long hose routing once deployed will depend on the position of the divers in relation to one another. Another consideration would be if the divers are forced to swim single file (like getting through a restriction).
If the donating diver is on the left side of the OOA diver, the long hose will be held by the OOA diver in their left hand, wrapped behind the head and into the mouth of the OOA diver. The graphic below shows the hose routing. In this example. The OOA diver is on the right and the donor diver is on the left.
If the donating diver is on the right side of the OOA diver, the long hose will be routed behind the donating diver’s head. It will be held by the OOA diver in their right hand and into the mouth. The graphic below shows the hose routing. In this example, the OOA diver is on the left and the donor diver is on the right.
When traveling single file while air sharing with the long hose, the donating diver will be behind the OOA diver. The long hose will be routed from the donor, up to the OOA diver, running next to the tanks of the OOA diver. Then into the OOA diver’s mouth. The graphic shows the hose routing. In this example. The OOA diver is in front and to the left.
It should be noted as well, that the donor is also responsible for managing the long hose. The donor can hold onto the long hose to keep it from getting caught on something. Just make sure the donor doesn’t interfere with the OOA diver. In each case of an air share, the OOA diver should be holding onto the long hose. Remember, that hose is the only source of breathing gas. It should also be mentioned that touch contact becomes critical when swimming while on an air share. When on the air share with the long hose, the donating diver should maintain touch contact with the OOA diver.
The thing that diver’s should take away from this, is that the team needs to decide which method of routing the long hose works best for the situation they are in. Each time the air sharing team changes direction or conditions change, the long hose routing needs to be evaluated. This can be the difficult part considering a diver did have an out of air emergency and decision making may become rushed. Take your time, move slowly and maintain awareness of where the long hose is at all times.