“Diver Propulsion Vehicle” courses or “DPV” courses have become an important part in technical dive training. To conserve energy and to get further on your gas supply many exploration dives in caves and the deep were made with these special underwater vehicles. There are many different DPV’s used in Technical diving from types where the diver simply holds a grip and is pulled through the water to DPV’s where the diver lies on a frame or sits on a seat. The exploration of reefs, walls, caves and wrecks with a DPV has many advantages like the distance you can cover on a large wreck, or not having to worry about currents to doing deep penetrations in caves. This course also explains about the different methods of propulsion, handling, maintenance and the necessary equipment parts to get the best out of your DPV. With the extra distance covered when using a DPV there comes a need for better planning as failure of the vehicle at maximum penetrations are fatal if the correct gas management plan has not been formulated and dived.
This course is designed to provide training for cave divers who want to conduct dives that warrant the use of a DPV. This course also addresses the conservation concerns and the ethical responsibilities of divers who wish to use DPVs for extended penetration, touring, or exploration. The owners of ProTec Playa wrote the outline for this level of training so why do we train divers to this level? Because we do it.
This course involves intense skills in gear failure, diving limits, conservation and decompression concerns and in particular gas management to avoid unsafe situations.
Note: In the USA it is usually required to have a certification to dive caves with a DPV.