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Scientific Diving Reciprocity

Diver underwater

The Diving Safety Program at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) was established to support and oversee scientific diving activities conducted under the auspices of the University. The program strives to provide comprehensive safety and training standards and guidelines for scientific divers. Through these standards and guidelines, scientists can achieve their research goals while minimizing the risk of diving-related injury and illness. The standards also provide for working reciprocity between the UMD and other institutions involved in scientific diving.

The Diving Safety Program at UMD was created, in part, as a response to OSHA regulations for commercial diving. OSHA exempted scientific diving from commercial diving regulations under certain conditions. In addition to following the guidelines of the OSHA exemption, the Diving Safety Program at UMD follows scientific diving standards as set forth by the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS). AAUS is recognized by OSHA as the standard setting organization for scientific diving (Federal Register, Vol. 50, No.60, p.1046).

The Diving Safety Program operates under the guidance of the Diving Control Board and is represented in its day-to-day operations by the Diving Safety Officer. All diving conducted under the auspices of the UMD is subject to the standards established by the Diving Control Board as described in the UMD Diving Safety Manual.