Spearfishing is gaining more and more popularity around the world and it’s pretty easy to see why. It is such a fun sport that requires a very small investment and can be done by almost anybody. A sport that gives you the chance to experience unique adventures that make you feel so alive. It’s an experience that we believe everyone should go through and we are so happy to see how many people decide to try it.
However, spearfishing gaining so much popularity can also be a bad thing. It seems the more people start to participate, the more they forget how risky it can be. The ocean can be a very dangerous environment that would be unforgiving if you go there unprepared. Safety should be taken very seriously when spearfishing. Otherwise, a simple dive could have very ugly results.
Don’t worry though! Spearfishing is not as dangerous as it can seem – you just have to be careful. Today we will rise your awareness on some of the dangers that come when you’re not spearfishing carefully.
In this article we are giving you a list of the most thing you should be mindful of and guidelines on how to stay safe under water.
Taking selfies with loaded spearguns
Starting off with a risk that you can create for yourself. Unfortunately, lately this seems to be happening way more that it should be. There is nothing wrong with taking selfies for social media. Just try not to endanger yourself or others around you in the process. There are too many stories about people accidentally shooting themselves or others as it is. Just use your common sense and don’t take any unnecessary risks just so you can look cool on Instagram.
Worst. Timing. Ever.
If you have dived with others, you have most likely seen this. You take a moment to look around and as you see people fishing around you, you notice someone is turning and for a split second their spear gun is pointed at you.
Well, guess what.. people get shot like that way too often. It’s the main reason for people to decide to only dive alone. This is very irresponsible and the results are always unpleasant to say the least.
To avoid these situations, we recommend you only dive either by yourself or with groups of experienced spearfishermen that know what they’re doing and you can trust. Experienced veterans have most likely seen people accidentally get shot or have been shot themselves. Once someone sees something like this, they’re always careful.
On your hand, always be mindful of where you’re pointing your spear gun. You wouldn’t want to shoot your friends just because you weren’t paying attention. Always be careful when holding a spear gun and remember that you have a deadly weapon in your hands.
You should always be careful not to shoot at the wrong time anyway since a missed or accidental shot can damage your spear.
Sharks are only a problem if you dive in their areas. Naturally, since they are predators, they like areas where there is plenty of fish.
That’s why some of the best spearfishing spots are in shark areas. The last time there was a shark attack was way back in the 70s, but you should still take precautions if diving in a shark area.
Here are some guidelines you can follow to stay safe:
- Never dive in a shark area alone. You should always have someone to watch your back.
- Never attach fish to your body. That way if a shark has been attracted, it won’t go after you.
- Finish off a successful hit as soon as possible. The blood attracts sharks on itself, but the vibrations of the panicked fish does as well.
- Transport a catch to a float on the surface as soon as possible. Secure your dinner before attracting a shark.
- Don’t ever shoot a shark. It’s the easiest way to make them angry. Act as if you’re trying to poke it around the eyes with your spear instead. Sharks look for easy pray and that would scare them off. In areas that are known to have sharks for sure, dive in groups. Sharks are almost sure to avoid a group of humans.
- Always look them in the eyes. Eye contact really unnerves shark.
Waves, currents and tides.
Regardless of how fit you are or how good you can swim, you won’t be able to overcome a strong wave, tide or current.
They can be very dangerous, especially the ones that break into rocks. To avoid them, you should be knowledgeable about the area. You should also check the tide and its direction every time before you enter the water.
Blacking out in shallow waters.
When you dive under water to catch fish, you might hold your breath for too long and pass out.
The main reason it happens is hyperventilation. Tolerance against carbon dioxide is often developed when you are diving for long periods of time on regular basis. This tricks you into holding your breath for too long, which leads to not having oxygen when resurfacing.
Interestingly enough, the more experienced you get under water, the more risky it becomes for you to pass out.
If nobody is there to pull you out of the water in case of a blackout, you would eventually drown. Obviously, you should always have someone to have your back in case of emergencies.
Make sure you dive with someone who would be there for you until you regain consciousness and breathing if they have to.
Guidelines for spearfishing safety
While staying safe will surely require knowledge about the area and condition you’ll be diving in, it i always good to follow certain rules.
- Make sure you have sufficient surface intervals. If you are planning to dive for long periods of time, you would want your surface time to always be twice as long as the previous one. That’s the best way to ensure you’re not going to pass out under water.
- Have someone with you all the time. If you’re going for a quick dive in a reef, it’s okay to be alone. But if you’re planning to be spearfishing for longer or in deeper waters, have someone to watch your back at all times. In case of a blackout, shark attack, waves smashing you into rocks or any other accident, your chances of survival depend having someone with you.
- Be mindful of how long you keep your breath. Always resurface immediately when you feel like you’re running out of air. Even if it seems like you’re just about to catch a fish. A catch isn’t as important as not passing out.
- Watch where you’re pointing your speargun when loading it. Make sure you’re not aiming at yourself or someone else.
- Use your speargun as carefully as you can. Missing a shot or shooting accidentally can result in your spear shooting into a rock. That would most likely damage it. It gets scary if you accidentally hit you dive buddy. When you’re diving with someone, you both rely on each other to have your backs, not shoot them
While spearfishing can be so interesting and you can enjoy doing it for hours, it can also be dangerous.
You have to know the environment you want to be diving in. That means you should always check how strong the tide is and what is its direction; be informed if sharks are known to swim there and all kinds of research.
There are too many cases of people dying, surviving miraculously or getting wounded by spear guns. You should always keep in mind that you are using a deadly weapon. Nobody should lose their lives because someone else wasn’t mindful of their actions.
Although spearfishing has its dangers, it’s not really dangerous if you do it carefully. If you follow certain guidelines and take safety seriously, your chances of injury are quite low.
We hope this article was helpful to you and eventually helped prevent an accident.With all that said, we hope you stay safe out there and wish you good luck spearfishing!