Enjoy SCUBA Diving in Hawaii?

Learn how SCUBA equipment and HAZWOPER SCBA Respirator Equipment are related.

Scuba Diving in Hawaii is one of the greatest joys of the Islands.  At Fast CPR’ Pacific Safety Academy in Downtown Honolulu, we get to meet Rescue Divers, Dive Masters and Dive Instructors and Commercial Divers of Hawaii as we help them meet their First Aid CPR AED Training requirements, Emergency O2 Training requirements, BBP Training requirements etc.  If you live in Hawaii and you have not yet picked up SCUBA diving, we highly recommend at least checking it out!

Diving, regardless done recreationally or as one’s job, has many commonalities with the training Hawaii’s Hazardous Materials Waste Operations and Emergency Response workers receive from us at PSA.  Just like dive training, HAZWOPER training is also about knowledge, rules, recognition, prevention, protective equipment and protocols to function in Hazardous Environments safely.

Ability to inhale in a place where you are not supposed to take a breath makes SCUBA diving possible.  Besides getting in that air, in Hazardous Materials training world, respirators that provide respiratory protection are of primary importance, because inhalation is one of the major routes of exposure to toxins.

When it comes to respirators, they either have an air source or a way to purify the air.  The air source respirators are also called atmosphere-supplying respirators.  An idea with this is that the air comes from a separate place than the particular hazardous atmosphere that may be flammable, toxic, corrosive, or asphyxiating.

Types of ASRs:
Two types of atmosphere-supplying respirators are:

  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA). In this case, the air comes from the source carried by the user.  Similar idea as the high-pressure scuba tank and the regulator you go diving with.  But your Open Circuit SCUBA gear is specifically for underwater use and feels much lighter while you are using it!
  • Supplied-Air Respirator (SAR). In this case, the air comes from a source located certain distance away from the user, supplied to the user by a hose.  You can think of SAR being sort of like the old diver wearing a Mark V Helmet, with a big hose attached to the helmet and the hose leading to the boat that has the air pump.


Above: Picture of SCBA used in Hazardous Environments.  As can be seen, SBCAs made to be used on land, look similar to Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus made specifically to be used in open circuit SCUBA diving.

This blog is just a brief introduction Atmosphere Supplying Respirators (ASRs), it is not intended to be a substitute training for using SCBA or SCUBA equipment.  If you are interested in finding out more about safety, first aid, CPR and compliance training we offer to Hawaii’s Rescue Divers, Dive Masters, Dive Instructors and Commercial Divers, please check out www.FastCPR.org.  If you are interested in finding out more about respirators and other PPE, we have many exciting venues of training at The Pacific Safety Academy in Honolulu, including Hazardous Materials Operations and Emergency Response.  We can even set up a customized group class at your workplace.  Classes are live instructor led format, OSHA’s preferred method for safety training.

Mahalo for reading and stay safe.