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Gulf of Mexico Special Arrangements for Experienced Diving Supervisors


As IMCA expanded into the Gulf of Mexico region in 2003, it became apparent that the diving contractors joining IMCA’s Diving Division had difficulty meeting the requirements for supervisors to hold IMCA certification. To overcome this problem, IMCA put in place special arrangements for experienced supervisors for such companies. Each newly joining company was provided with the opportunity of nominating their long-term supervisors so that the ‘special arrangements’ could apply to them.

For these companies, the special arrangements were that their nominated experienced supervisors attended an appropriate IMCA approved diving supervisor course, gained panel time as a substantive supervisor and then applied for, sat and passed the appropriate IMCA diving supervisor examination.

In January 2014 it was decided to end these arrangements for existing companies, giving them one year’s notice of IMCA’s intention. The arrangements would cease at the end of 2014.

The revised special arrangements

Any new diving contractor applicants for membership of IMCA’s Diving Division will be eligible for the revised special arrangements for supervisors who will now be required to complete with process by attending the appropriate IMCA approved diving supervisor training course, completing the post-course panel time requirements and applying to sit the IMCA exam within two years of the date of the submission of the list.

The arrangements for IMCA recognition of experienced diving supervisor for any new contractor becoming a member from the Gulf of Mexico region will be as follows:

  1. The company must nominate candidates and provide a list of their names to IMCA. Any staff nominated will need have acted in the capacity of either a bell or air diving supervisor for more than two years and worked for the applicant company for a minimum of six months (once the list is submitted to the IMCA secretariat it cannot be changed).
  2. It is likely that some of the candidates will not hold an IMCA recognised diving qualification in accordance with the current IMCA information note Diving and diver supervisor certification. It is the company’s responsibility to confirm in writing that any nominated candidates have appropriate diving experience (i.e. hold a diving ticket and have appropriate experience as an offshore diver).
  3. Any candidates nominated under these arrangements will then have to undertake and successfully pass the appropriate IMCA diving supervisor training course(s).
  4. Having completed the above, the candidates will then be required to fulfil the minimum logged panel hours as set out in IMCA offshore diving supervisor and life support technician certification schemes (IMCA D 013). These panel hours can be gained whilst working as a substantive diving supervisor and need not be gained working as a trainee diving supervisor.
  5. Once the logged panel hours have been gained they will then need to apply for, sit and successfully pass the appropriate IMCA supervisor examination(s).
  6. Any candidate nominated must complete the process within two years of the date of nomination or they will be need to undertake all the steps and requirements as detailed in IMCA D 013.

It should be noted that holding an IMCA diving supervisor’s certificate issued under this scheme does not validate the supervisor’s diving qualification, should it not be an IMCA recognised diving certificate.

IMCA Contact

Peter Sieniewicz
Technical Adviser - Diving

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