Spear fishing safety
Some advice to be sure you follow:
Spear fishing is controlled by numerous laws aimed a ensuring safety, civility, and the preservation of the special playground that is the seabed. In order to ensure that everyone can enjoy this sport, users must comply with the statutory requirements governing it.
To practise spear fishing, you must be aged over 16 years old.
For every outing, you must have a valid third party liability insurance with unlimited cover and be in possession of the receipt of your underwater fishing licence issued by Maritime Affairs.
Once underwater, the spear fisherman must indicate his presence with a standard "alpha" flag, a red flag with a Saint Andrew's cross or a red flag with a white diagonal stripe.
Regulations may vary between zones. Seek advice from the maritime authorities.
Spear fishing divers may not use breathing apparatus, self-contained or not, that allows a submerged person to breathe during a dive, or a pneumatic speargun for which the air is compressed other than by the user himself.
A loaded speargun may not be held above water.
Spear fishing is banned between sunset and sunrise.
A spear fisherman may not fish within 150 m of fishing vessels and marked fishing nets or catch fish located in other fishing equipment.
A vessel may not be equipped with self-contained diving gear and fishing gear at the same time.
A spear fisherman may not use lamps.
Lastly, selling one's catch is banned.
Good Practice / Bad Practice
- Always dive in pairs.
During your outings at sea, it is advisable to be accompanied by an experienced person.
- Do not dive if you are tired.
Do not hyperventilate, and give yourself enough time to recover between each free-dive.
- Signal your presence:
Isolated spear fishermen must signal their presence with a buoy fitted with a red flag and a white Saint Andrew's cross or a red flag with a diagonal white stripe.
You must be located just beside this buoy
- Never load your speargun out of the water