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Tips for Tourists : Regarding Coral Reefs
Destruction of coral reefs is sometimes caused by uninformed sea divers. Here are some ways in which you, as a diver, can help prevent loss of coral and at the same time preserve the beauty of the underwater world.

1) Use the lightest weight belt to prevent it from sinking into and damaging the coral. Make sure you are properly weighted and learn how to achieve neutral buoyancy control depth by balancing your body weight with the lead belt and use breathing techniques.

2) Swim in a horizontal position, keeping a constant distance away from the coral, eyes looking ahead. Do not roll or somersault because your oxygen tank may accidentally bump into the coral and kill it.

3) Limit the use of fins when swimming just above the coral to avoid creating a cloud of sand in the water, which can smother the polyps that form the coral.

4) If you are not an expert diver, it is advisable for you not to nose dive or steeply dive into the water, but rather to carefully use the anchor to guide you down.

5) Do not collect any coralline, coral, seashells or starfish from the sea. Leave them for others to admire in their natural beauty.

6) Do not step on any coral reef, even if it is large and looks strong enough to support you. The tiny polyps inside it may die from the slightest touch.

7) Do not touch living coral reefs. A touch, however light, may cause the coral to become a dead substance.

8) Keep ropes or tubes from hanging loose. Divers who leave their oxygen regulators or emergency oxygen tubes hanging often get them stuck to coral.

9) Fasten your weight belt firmly in order to keep it from falling onto the coral and creating great damage.

10) Never touch any marine organisms; whether they are fish or plants. Observe them at a comfortable distance, especially large sea life such as stingrays, and whale-sharks because you will startle them and they may stay away from divers forever. Do not chase or race against each other underwater.

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