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'Diver diver, are you okay?' - said every PADI Rescue Diver

Updated: May 3, 2022

You're floating along the reef in Roatán, enjoying the beautiful corals, flora and fauna at a depth of 60ft/18 meters. Happy as can be, back in the underwater world. Suddenly, your buddy starts to panic and grabs for you. Their eyes are wide and unfocussed, and you cannot get their attention to calm them down. Next, they start to rapidly ascend an uncontrolled rate.

Would you know what to do?

Do you feel ready to take your skills to the next level? Yes! Then the PADI Rescue Diver Course is for you! After you have completed the PADI Advanced Course and Emergency First Response (EFR) - the PADI Rescue Diver Course is the next step in the PADI World. Most rescue divers say that their PADI Rescue Diver course was their most memorable and challenging course, but also their most fun!

With our Rescue Diver Course, you ensure your skills in self-rescue first and then learn how to help others in emergency situations. Whether that's a distressed buddy after breathing too hard or finding a diver unconscious underwater, the Rescue Diver course will guide you through these scenarios step by step.

The PADI Rescue Diver Course is also essential if you're planning on becoming a dive professional, as both Divemaster and Instructor training reviews the important rescue skills that you will learn in this course. Within the Rescue Diver Course, you will perform 10 skills and 2 scenarios to practice all the skills you have learned, in a real-life simulation.

Some of the skills learned include:

  • Panicked Diver Underwater

  • Rapid Ascent from a Diver

  • Missing Diver

  • Surfacing an Unresponsive Diver

  • Unresponsive Diver at the Surface

  • Towing an Unconscious Diver

  • Removing an Unconscious Diver from the Water (Boat + Shore)

  • How to provide Emergency Oxygen, First Aid and Report an Incident

At West Bay Divers, we conduct the skills in confined shallow water before progressing to our Open Water (deeper) portion. We will master the skills one at a time and then put them to the test.


  • Minimum age of 12 years old. (12 - 14-year-old divers may earn a Junior Rescue Diver certification. 15+ years earn a Rescue Diver certification).

  • Must be a PADI Advanced Scuba Diver/ PADI (Junior) Advanced Scuba Diver or equivalent organization.

  • EFR® Primary and Secondary Care training within 24 months (Training may be completed along with rescue diver course).

Time and Cost:

What's the Itinerary?

Day 1 -

8 am: Good morning! We will meet and get to know each other at the dive shop. We will be able to pick out equipment tailored specifically to you and ensure it is well-fitting. We have state of the art CRESSI Dive equipment which is all well maintained, clean and serviced regularly. We will then revisit our PADI Rescue Diver theory and review some of the important concepts discussed in the video you will have viewed/or the book you have read. Here is the time to ask any questions you have about any issues you did not fully understand in your theory portion.

9am: Time for our briefing. This is one of the most important parts of the day. Your instructor will start to discuss the skills you will visit in confined water. These skills may include, panicked diver at the surface, distressed diver underwater, missing diver, cramp or encountering a tired diver.

9.30am: You will enter confined water and begin to practice the skills discussed in the briefing for that day. This part may take a few hours in confined water, so be sure to wear your reef safe sunscreen!

1pm: You will have a break for lunch and can enjoy a number of delicious foods available near West Bay Divers. Depending on how many skills you have worked through already you may be asked to return for an afternoon session water session or you may be done for the day.

Day 2:

8am: We will meet nice and early to discuss your Emergency Assistance Plan (EAP). You will pick a dive emergency and begin to design a plan for if that were to happen. Some information you want to include are - local emergency phone numbers, Primary Care Procedures, Secondary Care and local decompression chambers.

9am: We will head to the water to start your second day of confined skills. We will revisit any we struggled with yesterday and once we have completed all 10 confined skills perfectly, we will begin to conduct a practice for the rescue scenarios.

11am: Open Water Dive 1 - Time to put your skills to the test and start to perform Open Water Dive - Scenario 1. You will use the skills you have perfected in shallow water to complete a real-life simulation of a dive related emergency.

2pm: Open Water Dive 2 - One final test, in which you will perform Open Water Dive - Scenario 2 and perform the hardest rescue portion of your test, recovering an unconscious diver at the surface and making it back to the boat while performing the full rescue mantra. Providing rescue breaths, while towing and ensuring their airway is clear. You will ensure they are safety lifting onto the boat, gather emergency oxygen and first aid and call for help. This last test is tough - but we ensure you, it will increase your diving confidence greatly and prepare you should the worst happen.

Upon passing all 10 skills, finishing your emergency assistance plan and your last 2 Rescue Scenarios - you will be a fully qualified PADI Rescue Diver.

Any more questions about becoming a PADI Open Water Scuba Diver? Email us at to find out more.

(Schedule is a rough guide and may vary due to weather, level of skill and instructor preferences. All prices include full equipment rental but exclude Honduran Tax).


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