What does a Commercial Diver do?

Work below surface of water, using scuba gear to inspect, repair, remove, or install equipment and structures. May use a variety of power and hand tools, such as drills, sledgehammers, torches, and welding equipment. May conduct tests or experiments, rig explosives, or photograph structures or marine life.

Jobs Roles

  • Communicate with workers on the surface while underwater, using signal lines or telephones.
  • Take appropriate safety precautions, such as monitoring dive lengths and depths and registering with authorities before diving expeditions begin.
  • Check and maintain diving equipment, such as helmets, masks, air tanks, harnesses, or gauges.
  • Descend into water with the aid of diver helpers, using scuba gear or diving suits.
  • Obtain information about diving tasks and environmental conditions.
  • Inspect and test docks, ships, buoyage systems, plant intakes or outflows, or underwater pipelines, cables, or sewers, using closed circuit television, still photography, and testing equipment.
  • Repair ships, bridge foundations, or other structures below the water line, using caulk, bolts, and hand tools.
  • Cut and weld steel, using underwater welding equipment, jigs, and supports.
  • Recover objects by placing rigging around sunken objects, hooking rigging to crane lines, and operating winches, derricks, or cranes to raise objects.
  • Install pilings or footings for piers or bridges.
  • Take test samples or photographs to assess the condition of vessels or structures.
  • Install, inspect, clean, or repair piping or valves.
  • Operate underwater video, sonar, recording, or related equipment to investigate underwater structures or marine life.
  • Remove obstructions from strainers or marine railway or launching ways, using pneumatic or power hand tools.
  • Salvage wrecked ships or their cargo, using pneumatic power velocity and hydraulic tools and explosive charges, when necessary.
  • Set or guide placement of pilings or sandbags to provide support for structures such as docks, bridges, cofferdams, or platforms.
  • Perform activities related to underwater search and rescue, salvage, recovery, or cleanup operations.
  • Supervise or train other divers, including hobby divers.
  • Carry out non-destructive testing, such as tests for cracks on the legs of oil rigs at sea.
  • Drill holes in rock and rig explosives for underwater demolitions.
  • Remove rubbish or pollution from the sea.
  • Perform offshore oil or gas exploration or extraction duties, such as conducting underwater surveys or repairing and maintaining drilling rigs or platforms.
  • Cultivate or harvest marine species or perform routine work on fish farms.
  • Set up dive sites for recreational instruction.
  • Inspect the condition of underwater steel or wood structures.
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