NEWS | Jan. 29, 2019

Dive Detachment Soldiers Earn Dive Supervisor Certification

By Sgt. James Larimer U.S. Army Central

Five U.S. Army staff sergeants assigned to the 86th Engineer Dive Detachment earned their dive supervisor qualification after completing dive supervisor training and qualification near Kuwait Naval Base, Kuwait, Jan. 22, 2019.

"For the past three weeks we have been doing a supervisor train up and getting all of our new E-6s who just came from the schoolhouse fully command qualified," said Staff Sgt. John M. Huff, a diving supervisor, assigned to the 86th EDD. "The reason we want our diving supervisors to be qualified is so they know how to do the proper protocols and to conduct safe operations during dives."

Due to the dangerous nature of deep-sea diving, a large portion of the dive supervisor qualification requirements focuses on diver safety and medical tasks.

"We are learning how to treat certain aspects of diving related and neurological symptoms," said Huff. "When we are inside the chamber we will do a full neurological exam making sure that everything checks out."

Divers rely on their supervisors, as well as the rest of their team, to accomplish their missions while eliminating as much risk as possible.

“We work as a team, and we are so close that we make sure that everybody knows what they are doing so that nobody is going to get hurt,” said Spc. Jordan P. Braiman, a second class diver assigned to the 86th. “We trust each other with our lives.”

Army divers perform a variety of tasks such as reconnaissance, demolition, and salvage in underwater conditions.

When there is a mission near a port, we can go there and clear the waterways to allow other units to come into the port and complete their mission safely, said Huff.

The 86th completes regular training dives to ensure they are ready to operate when they are needed. The five Soldiers completing their qualification greatly expands the capacity of the unit to conduct real-world missions.

"It is a good feeling knowing that we can get the full team up to date and have them all qualified so they can take missions all around Central Command, Africa Command, and Pacific Command,” said Huff.