DNR's dive team's primary duty is to conduct compliance monitoring during wild stock geoduck harvest periods. In addition, DNR divers perform other key functions including removing derelict vessels, fishing gear and debris; research and surveys; and outreach and education.
DNR is committed to the safe operations of our dive team and of the commercial divers who contract with the companies that bid for the opportunity to harvest wild stock geoducks from state-owned aquatic lands.
Rulemaking: Geoduck diver safety
Second Substitute House Bill 1764, directed DNR to establish: (a) an advisory geoduck harvester safety committee; and (b) a geoduck diver safety program outlining mandatory safety requirements for commercial divers participating in the state wildstock fishery. On August 18, 2015, the Board of Natural Resources passed a resolution to adopt a geoduck diver safety program that is substantively based on the safety committee’s November 2013 recommendations. A copy of the final rule language can be found here.
All wildstock geoduck divers participating in the state-managed fishery will be required to demonstrate compliance with the adopted rule as a prerequisite for obtaining a 2016 Department of Fish & Wildlife geoduck diver license or being listed 2016 DNR harvest plan of operations. Required qualifications include:
(1) CPR/First Aid certification;
(2) Emergency oxygen administration certification;
(3) Washington State Boater Education Card; and
(4) A self- attestation confirming applicant possesses a combination of training and experience necessary to conduct harvest diving a safe and healthful manner.
Materials for compliance verification will be accepted by DNR starting October, 1, 2015. All divers must complete an attestation form and provide documentation of required training. Materials shall be submitted via certified mail, email or fax. DNR will not process materials submitted in person. Attestation forms submitted without required documentation shall be considered incomplete and will not be processed.
For more information about rulemaking for the Geoduck Diver Safety Program, contact: Matt Goehring, 360-902-1090.