I am pleased to announce that after two years of development I expect that the Diving Unit Assessment (DUSA) program will be operational by October, 2011 with unit assessments to begin in November, 2011. The majority of the program is ready for distribution and has been turned over to administrative support for final review and publication.
We will be inspecting the units by region beginning with the West Coast /Hawaiian Islands. I will be working with the LODO/SODO and UDSs to schedule individual inspections dates. Each unit is asked to provide three dates for inspection within different quarters of the FY to assist in constructing a tentative schedule. Each inspection is expected to take two full days.
The DUSA Policy and Standards and Procedures Manual has been approved and sent to all divers. These documents both establish authority to conduct these inspections and describe participant roles and responsibilities within the DUSA program. Please review these documents for a better understanding of the program.
A PowerPoint presentation has also been created for use during unit inspection. This will ensure consistency in inspection procedures and standards from Unit to Unit. These requirements are also codified in either the Science or Working Standards and Safety Manuals. All participants are required to complete this training and keep a Certificate of Completion with their unit records with a copy sent to UDS. In the future this training will also be available through the Commerce Learning Center (CLC). I will notify you when it is ready for viewing.
It is my goal to assist the NDP in becoming aware and compliant with all applicable safety regulations and ask for everyone’s patience and cooperation as we get this program off the ground. As with any new program, there will inevitably be changes and improvements that will need to be made along the way and I welcome your observations and suggestions for improving the program. Please feel free to contact me with any questions at email@example.com or 206.526.6223.
NOAA Diving Safety Officer