SWBA Limitations

Ice   Ice Hazard – in water colder than 4 degrees Celsius then we recommend (based on 2014  Dive Lab testing) Regulator freeze – HP cylinder pressure under 200 bar + low to moderate breathing rate (15-30 lpm flow) Free ice formation – awareness that may inhale ice into the trachea – bail! at least […]

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SWBA Products

Core Characteristics SWBA® should have the following characteristics: Aluminum or composite wrap* cylinder approved for breathable air, that meets local or international standards Cylinder fitting with suitable burst disc that meets local or international standards A (water) volume range between 200 and 490 ml A minimum working pressure of 200 bar (maximum 300 bar) Visual […]

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New Zealand Law for SWBA

In New Zealand, in additional to usual occupational safety and health requirements, there are a number of regulatory requirements that govern self-contained breathing apparatus, diving and compressed gas cylinders. Air quality and filling Under the Health and Safety at Work (Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017:  Only an Approved Filler may recharge the SWBA air cylinder (or […]

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Good Practice Guide – SWBA

As the PSI Global Good Practice Guide (GPG) for Swiftwater Breathing Apparatus is adapted from the WorkSafe New Zealand Good Practice Guideline for Diving, it is available also under a Creative Commons Attributable, Non-Commercial 3.0 NZ license. Please review the GPG and return to the online course to continue.

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SWBA Operator Guide

In accordance with the Good Practice Guide – Swiftwater Breathing Apparatus, operators of SWBA must hold both swiftwater rescue technician and supervised diver certifications. As such, the SWBA certification bridges the small gap in knowledge and skills to ensure operators can safely use SWBA in a swiftwater environment. Quick Reference Guide All the approved products […]

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Minimum Co-Requisite Certifications

For the purposes of receiving SWBA certification by PSI Global, students must: Complete this online course and examination (minimum of 70% pass) Upload a valid and current swiftwater rescue technician certification from PSI recognized body (i.e. PUASAR, IPSQA, DEFRA, NFPA) Upload a valid and current diving certification (ISO 24801-1 “Supervised Diver” or higher, or PSI […]

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SWBA Overview

Background In 2023, Dr Steve Glassey started to investigate the use of Emergency Breathing Systems (EBS) traditionally used for aviation and marine emergency egress, for swiftwater rescue. Inspired by off-shore yachting, where small bottles of compressed air were fitted into lifejackets to help sailors escape from underneath a sinking vessel or submerged sail, Steve wanted […]

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Air Capacity

Type I Air Capacity   To calculate the amount of air held in a 370 ml cylinder at 300 bar, we need to use the formula:   Volume = (pressure x cylinder volume) / (gas constant x absolute temperature)   The gas constant for air is 0.0821 L·atm/(mol·K) and the absolute temperature is 273 + […]

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Design Standards

Design Standards An important note for users to be aware of, is that currently there is no international standard for the design of swiftwater rescue breathing apparatus.  By default, a number of other standards and references are used to help inform good practice. These include: EN250:2014 Respiratory equipment – Open-circuit self-contained compressed air diving apparatus […]

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