Some divers may worry that ROVs will reduce their opportunities for work but ROVs can be a diver’s best ally.
According to OSHA, “Commercial diving… workers are exposed to the same hazards anyone would if they spent extended periods of time underwater, such as drowning, respiratory and circulatory problems, and hypothermia. The number of dives, length of time spent underwater, lack of visibility, and the strenuous nature of the task increase the risk of this type of activity.”
ROVs have a real impact on the amount of risk divers undertake. ROVs can assess underwater conditions and hazards. They perform important visual inspections with onboard video cameras, even when visibility is limited. And they perform these tasks BEFORE the diver gets wet.
Employers are responsible for taking hazards such as current, bottom conditions and water temperature into account when planning and executing operations. ROVs can be used to perform all of these tasks without putting a diver at risk. They are a reconnaissance tool and should be routine part of every underwater operation.
Even recreational divers can benefit from the use of ROVs. Aquabotix customers use the HydroView as “scout” before dives. Confirming the best location for a dive and previewing the sights from top-side enhance the recreational diving experience and efficiency.
Efficiency, preliminary exploration and safety. ROVs are the diver’s ally.