Scientific Diving

UNB Reference Number: 7841
Authorized by: E. Parr Johnston, President,
Effective Date: November 2001
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To outline University policy on scientific diving (freshwater and marine).


All administrative heads of departments; directors of research, study projects or programs; instructors of field courses; and persons in charge of any other scientific or educational pursuit involving diving shall be responsible for ensuring that all persons engaged in diving are aware of and comply with this policy. This policy is not intended to address recreational diving, e.g., as with dive clubs.


  • It is the policy of the University of New Brunswick to promote safe scientific diving based upon the requirements of the New Brunswick Occupational Health and Safety Regulations; the CSA Standard "Occupational Safety Code for Diving Operations"; and any subsequent legislation on diving.
  • The UNB Diving Safety Committee reports to the University President and shall meet at least annually to review policy and procedures for diving operations. The Committee membership consists of the Assistant Vice-President of Financial & Administrative Services - Saint John; Manager of Security & Safety - Saint John; Captain of the University Research Vessel; Safety Coordinator - Fredericton; and supervisors of underwater research.
  • The "UNB Diving Safety Manual" was developed by the Diving Safety Committee as a guide to the regulations and UNB policy on scientific diving.
  • The University maintains standards for membership in the Canadian Association for Underwater Science (CAUS). The CAUS is a self regulating body dedicated to safety in underwater research through establishment and continual peer review of standards of practice for scientific diving.
  • All divers must be certified in SCUBA (Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) diving by a recognized diver training agency, eg., Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI); National Association of Underwater Instructors (NAUI); American Canadian Underwater Certification (ACUC) or others. Certification must be appropriate to the level of diving which is performed. All divers must successfully complete the Divers Alert Network (DAN) Oxygen Course
  • All divers must pass a comprehensive medical examination every two years (Form A in the Manual).
  • In addition to meeting the requirements of paragraphs (e) and (f), all visiting divers shall sign a release form prior to diving (Form B in the Manual).
  • The Diving Safety Officer is appointed by the Diving Safety Committee and is responsible for notifying the Committee as soon as possible after the occurrence of any incident or accident involving the health and safety of divers. A UNB Accident Report Form shall be completed within 24 hours of the occurrence.

For copies of the UNB Diving Safety Manual, the N.B. OHS Regulations, or any other information regarding scientific diving, contact the Safety Office.