Spanish Diving law – BOE de buceo

24/02/2021

The BOE (official Spanish government publishment) has published a new regulation that aims to regulate the practice of diving in our country, Spain, and that became effective on July 1, 2020. Below, we have highlighted some of the aspects that we consider most relevant for you as a diver. All of them referring to recreational diving according to Royal Decree 550/2020, published on June 26. Recreational diving has as nature its lack of competition. This means, it is carried out as a form of fun, recreation, hobby or physical exercise.

Minimum age for diving

diver girl One of the aspects that stand out especially in this new BOE is related to age. To do this, a maximum depth is established according to a series of ages, which are the following:
  • From 8 to 9 years: up to six meters deep
  • From 10 to 11 years old: up to 12 meters
  • From 12 to 15 years: up to 21 meters
  • From 16 to 18 years old: up to 40 meters

Health status

As indicated, every diver will be responsible for ensuring that their health is adequate for diving. According to the characteristics of the sport to which we are referring, this issue is of special importance.

Since the entry into force of this new law, divers are required to sign a responsible statement about their own health.

  • It should be clarified that before this, a medical certificate of aptitude for diving was necessary. However, now a medical self-declaration is used that sets standards that you must comply with, if not, a medical certificate would still be necessary to be able to dive.

The minimum mandatory equipment

The following are considered mandatory equipment you must wear to go diving in Spain:

BOE de buceo

Diving Safety rules

Regarding general safety regulations, the following are especially noteworthy: 

divers in cave
  • The practice of the recreational diving modality in autonomous technique will have 40  meters as depth limit. At all times you must have direct access to the surface and the minimum diving unit will be the two persons.
  • No decompression stops are allowed (in recreational diving)
  • It is not allowed to enter caves,  inside sunken ships or any type of immersion that is carried out indoors and in which the light is lost or whose penetration depth is more than 30 meters.

Boat surface support

In the recreational diving modality, it will not be mandatory to have a support boat. As long as the dive takes place at a distance not exceeding 200 meters from the beach or 50 meters from the rest of the coast. Evacuation in case of emergency should always be feasible. Also, it is recommended to have emergency oxygen available.

Original BOE document of diving

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