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Flying After Diving

Recommendations of the 2002 Flying After Diving Workshop
General Comments. Recent experimental trials indicate the risk of decompression sickness (DCS) decreases as the preflight surface interval increases. Based on these studies, the Workshop reaches the following consensus recommendations. These recommendations apply to flights at cabin altitudes between 600 meters/ 2000 feet and 2400 meters/ 8000 feet and to divers who are without DCS symptoms. Work by Buehlmann, which was used by the US Navy Diving manual, suggests that immediate ascent to 600 meters/ 2000 feet altitude is possible with low DCS risk. In 1999, the US Navy adopted more flexible procedures based, in part on Buehlmann and Vann etal, Following these recommendations reduces DCS risk but does not guarantee that a diver will avoid DCS.

For Dives within the No-Decompression Limits
* Single Dives. A minimum preflight surface interval of 12 hours is recommended.
* Repetitive Dives and /or Multi day Dives. A minimum recommended preflight surface interval of 18 hours is suggested.

For Dives requiring Decompression Stop
* A minimum preflight surface interval greater than 18 hours is suggested.