Meet new scuba divers, maintain a virtual dive log, participate in our forum, share underwater photos, research dive sites and more. Members login here.

Flying after scuba diving, higher than 8000 feet cabin pressure.
Greg - 12/23/2009 4:52 PM
Category: Health & Safety
Replies: 1

The recommendation is to wait 18 hours after multiple dives before you fly in a commercial airplane. But what if you’re flying in a non-commercial airplane that isn’t pressurized and you go above the 8000 feet mark (that’s the max cabin altitude allowed by the FAA for pressurized commercial aircraft)?
duckman - 12/23/2009 6:16 PM
If I understand the question and based upon that understanding, if you assume that the pilot was also diving then the time is 24 hours per the FAA that is only for a pilot and crew. The 18 hour "rule" is based upon sound medical advice and applies to non FAA rated persons aboard the aircraft. Exceeding 8000 feet unpressurized is the same as losing pressure that exceeds 8000 feet the pilot would be required to descend and maintain altitude below 8000 feet. Short periods of time above that threshold is the same as bouncing to a deeper point than you are not equipped or "allowed" to go. You may get away with it but never a good idea. As an FAA certified pilot I say wait the extra 6 hours and you are then outside the envelope and exceeding the 8K altitude is fine. However your pilot is required to be on O2 at 12K feet even if you are not.... This is the point were a person suffers from Hypoxia(narced in reverse) 12K feet is the magic number everyone in the unpressurized cabin should be on O2 before that. The pilot and crew are required.