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SCOTSAC support lifeboat station campaign

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A campaign to save a picturesque harbour’s lifeboat station has won the backing of divers who fear it could put their lives at risk.

More than 4,200 people have already backed a petition to save the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) service operated from St Abbs in Berwickshire from being moved four miles away to Eyemouth.

Now the Scottish Sub-Aqua Club (SCOTSAC)’s 1,300 members have been urged to support the fight. Chairman Edna Ewan warned it would mean a loss of local knowledge meaning it would take longer to respond to incidents in waters popular with divers.

Ms Ewan has written to RNLI chief executive Paul Bossier outlining her concern. There is also concern the charity’s review, which prompted the decision to close the station, was carried out without local consultation.

The organisation’s national diving officer Gordon Young said: “We received messages on our own Facebook from members asking if the club, as the national governing body for scuba diving in Scotland, had written to the RNLI chief executive requesting an overturn on his decision.

“Before that point we had wanted to keep out of it but then our board of directors began communicating with each other saying that it was wrong to take that stance and that we should speak up because we have 1,300 members in Scotland who dive down at St Abbs, which is without a doubt the busiest diving area in Britain.

“There have been lots of incidents there where the crew at St Abbs have been called out and without them there could have been lives lost.”

The campaign’s supporters included the broadcaster Monty Halls, The National Trust for Scotland, South Scotland MSP Paul Wheelhouse and Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk MP Calum Kerr.

The lifeboat crew thanked SCOTSAC for their support.

Crew committee member Euan Gibson said: “The RNLI has an opportunity here to change their minds.

“It is not a case of saving face, there is a chance here for them to reverse this decision and come up smelling of roses because they are getting a fair amount of heat.”

An RNLI spokesman said: “Research conducted by the British Sub-Aqua Club indicates that 70 per cent of diving incidents are potentially avoidable.

“The RNLI already educates sea users in order to prevent accidents and drownings through our community lifesaving teams who use comprehensive action plans to tackle specific issues in specific areas.

“We will continue this work in St Abbs, alongside the community, to provide a service that helps divers stay safe.”

“The process involved in the decision to close an RNLI station is a long, comprehensive and carefully considered one.”

Source: www.heraldscotland.com

Marine Life & Conservation

Go Fish Free this February

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There are no longer plenty more fish in the sea! Fish Free February challenges you to help protect our oceans by removing seafood from your diet for 28 days and helping to raise awareness of the issues caused by intensive fishing practices.

Our oceans are in a state of global crisis, brought about by ocean warming, acidification, pollution, and habitat destruction. However, the biggest immediate threat to ocean life is from fisheries. Each year an estimated 1-2.7 trillion fish are caught for human consumption, though this figure does not include illegal fisheries, discarded fish, fish caught to be used as bait, or fish killed by not caught, so the real number is far higher. It is no wonder then, that today nearly 90% of the world’s marine stocks are fully exploited, overexploited or depleted. If we do not act fast, overfishing and damaging fishing practices will soon destroy the ocean ecosystems which produce 80% of the oxygen in our atmosphere and provide three billion people with their primary source of protein.

Fish Free February, a UK-registered charity, is challenging people around the world to take action for marine life in a simple but effective way. Take the Fish Free February Pledge and drop seafood from your diet for one month, or beyond. Fish Free February wants to get people talking about the wide range of issues associated with industrial fishing practices and putting the well-being of our oceans at the forefront of dietary decision-making. A third of all wild-caught fish are used to create feed for livestock, so Fish Free February urges us to opt for plant-based dishes as a sustainable alternative to seafood, sharing our best fish-free recipes on social media with #FishFreeFebruary and nominating our friends to do the same.

“Not all fishing practices are bad” explains Simon Hilbourne, founder of Fish Free February. “Well-managed, small-scale fisheries that use selective fishing gears can be sustainable. However, most of the seafood in our diet comes from industrial fisheries which often prioritise profit over the well-being of our planet, resulting in multiple environmental challenges. In some cases, the fishing industry has even been linked to serious human rights issues such as forced labour and human trafficking! Fish Free February hopes to shed more light on fishing practices, create wider discussion around these issues, and offer solutions to benefit people, wildlife, and the natural environment.”

To learn more about these issues and to take the Fish Free February pledge visit www.fishfreefebruary.com

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The Diver Medic introduces new DEMR course

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The Diver Medic has developed a course suitable for every diver, or even surface support officer out there. The course will instil confidence and understanding of the subject your instructor may not have had the knowledge and skills to teach you unless they were DEMR trained themselves.

The Diver Medic DEMR Course – Diving Emergency Medical Responder Course is approved and written by Chantelle Newman – The Diver Medic Course Director and Founder.

The main objective is to ensure divers get the right treatment in the event of an accident or diving emergency, whether inland or in a remote location.

The Diver Medic is Agency neutral and their mission is to support all Agencies in the quest for better medical training and safety for all divers.

Is this course for you?

This qualification is for people who have a specific responsibility at work, or in voluntary and community activities to provide pre-hospital care to patients requiring emergency care/treatment.

For example, Liveaboard crew, Skippers, Captains, Dive Boat Crew, Dive Schools, Instructors, DiveMasters, Course Directors, CoastGuard, RNLI, Police Divers, Public Safety Divers, Tenders, Scientific Divers, Military Divers, Recreation, Technical, Cave, CCR Divers, Freediver, Surface support staff, Freediver competition crew, Lifeguards, ThemePark Divers, Aquarium staff, Explorers, Nurses, Doctors, EMS and more.!

Entry Requirements

Learners must be at least 18 years old on the first day of training. CPR and AED certified, basic understanding of First Aid Training

Instructors

If you are interested in becoming a TDM Diving Emergency Medical Responder Instructor you can apply to The Diver Medic by emailing info@thedivermedic.com with your resume and an introductory letter explaining why you should be considered you as an Instructors.

For more information visit www.thedivermedic.com

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Competitions

This is the perfect start to your 2021 diving season… and at an incredible lead-in price of just £885 per person.

Jump on board the latest addition to the Emperor fleet and enjoy diving the famous sites of the Red Sea with this fantastic special offer. This itinerary takes in the wonderful South & St Johns from 26 February – 05 March 2021.  

Subject to availability – limited flight seats at this price so don't delay!

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk to book your spot!

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