Long Cove Dive Site
West Pennant, NS
Certification Level: All levels - easy site
Level of difficulty:
Easy. Long Cove dive site is located approximately 5 km west of Sambro. It is a relatively easy dive to enjoy by novice as well as experienced divers. You can park on West Pennant road before the gate and bring diving gear and accessories on the beach (shown in above picture)
Smooth entry and exit point on sand beach. There is a locked gate located before the beach; however, there are paths on the sides which lead to the beach. It is an excellent site to use various dive patterns such as straight line or U-shaped pattern. It is sheltered from wind until you head west to more open water. There are several rocks in the cove which make excellent hiding spots for lobsters and crabs as well as different species of saltwater fish. If you head east, you can pass under the bridge in the strong east-bound water current, but you must be aware of potential hazards. To return from the other side of the bridge, stick to the extremities or else it’s extremely difficult to swim against the current. Water temperatures are similar to most other sites, varying from just under 35 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter to just over 60 degrees in the fall.
Bottom composition and depth:
The bottom is sandy with a little silt and progressively sloping towards the middle. There is also an abundance of kelp which makes good shelter for marine life. The depth varies from 2 meters to 7 meters at low tide and increases gradually as you head west.
The visibility is quite good in the shallow water. However, this decreases with increased depth.
-Do not block the road or driveways as vehicles could be ticketed or towed.
-There are no washroom facilities or garbage cans so area must be kept clean.
-Bring water and sustenance to stay hydrated and energized (no convenience store within proximity).
Hazards and safety:
-Be aware of small fishing boats in the area.
-Do not disturb marine life; this creates negative consequences for aquatic species as well as divers.
-Be aware of shifting winds and tides
Emergency Plan and Contact Information:
Before diving at any site, divers need to establish an emergency plan in case things go wrong because SCUBA diving, although enjoyable, can be very dangerous. If a diver is uncomfortable (stress) or has a bad feeling about the dive, it is better to postpone the activity in order to resolve the issue or cancel the dive completely. Make sure to have a cell phone with a good signal in the area. There are several houses in the area that may serve in getting assistance.
Emergency Procedures to consider:
-If a diver is lost, you must initiate emergency procedures.
-Determine the most appropriate search technique for the dive site.
-Secure necessary equipment.
-Recall other divers if there is an emergency.
-Organize rescue and first aid care and establish control.
-Alert rescue authorities.
-Prepare first aid equipment.
-Provide basic life support.
Basic Life Support
Assess scene safety. Remove the diver from the water if necessary, and ensure the safety of all rescuers.
- Assess responsiveness. If the diver is unresponsive, immediately activate your emergency plan.
Call for emergency medical services.
- Open the airway and check for breathing.
- If the diver is not breathing normally, deliver 2 rescue breaths.
- Begin CPR. Immediately deliver 30 compressions followed by 2 breaths.
- Provide emergency oxygen, if available, at the highest possible concentration using the most suitable delivery device.
Common dive emergency situations:
Low -air / out of air -know the difference in signal between the 2 (low-air is fist held close to chest and out-of-air is a clear throat slitting motion. Make sure to ascend safely and be vigilant for obstacles around and above.
Lost buddy -do a 360 degree turn and look for 1 minute then carry on to the surface and inflate your BCD in order to be positively buoyant. If buddy is still not visible at the surface after a couple minutes, exit the water and contact emergency assistance.
Injured diver -If you or buddy injured for any reason, safely make your way back to shore and assess the situation and determine if medical assistance is needed. If injury is cause by marine life, ensure that the healthy diver doesn’t also become a victim and make sure you give as much information from the situation as possible to the medical team.
4. Near -drowning, decompression illness, or lung injury – make way to the shore and immediately contact medical assistance.
Call 911 for Police, Fire and Ambulance services. Dive site is Long Cove in West Pennant.
OTHER EMERGENCY SERVICES NUMBERS:
-Harrietsfield-Sambro Fire Dept 477-3534
-RECOMPRESSION CHAMBER 473-7998
Dickson Building of The Victoria General
-QEII Hospital 473-2220
-Joint Rescue Coordination Centre 427-8200 or 1-800-565-1582
-DIVERS ALERT NETWORK (DAN) 1-919-684-4DAN (4326)
-MARINE VHF: Channel 16
Directions from Halifax: Drive 29.0 km, 36 min
-At the Armdale roundabout, take the 4th exit onto Herring Cove Rd/NS-349 S for 2.7 km
-Turn right onto Old Sambro Rd/NS-306 N (signs for NS-102/NS-103/Northwest Arm Drive/Old Sambro Road) for 18.4 km
-Turn right onto W Pennant Rd for 3.8 km until you see the small bridge