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Welcome to 2013...

...and Happy New Year! We hope you've had a great Christmas and New Year's break, and have been out enjoying the water. Looking back on 2012 we have made incredible progress as a club. We've hit a never before seen milestone, and have surpassed the 200 member mark. This is a HUGE achievement, and all from the humble beginnings back in 1968 with 6 members! I would like to really thank the 2012 committee for laying the groundwork, and for you, the active divers who make our club events so much fun. People have fun diving with TUDC, which is why we are seeing the growth we have today.

The committee (and senior members) have been working hard obtaining new boats, increasing our assets and rental equipment, launching the Northern Chapter of TUDC up in Launceston at the AMC (Australian Maritime College), and looking at our safety profile to implement new projects and procedures, and ensuring we're doing everything we can to keep diving safe for everyone. By now you would have seen the 'Drive to Dive' scheme on Facebook, and if not, the poster with all of the info is below in this newsletter. It's a great initiative, and adds another level of safety and sexy to our diving. While it's the club that makes all these things happen, we also thank the TUU Sports Council for providing the grants and financial assistance to make all of these things a reality.

While 2012 looks like a hard year to top, we've had an amazing start to this year already, with the post-Taste cleanup dive a cracking success (see the TUDC facebook page for the news clip and media exposure), some great dives on the calendar already, and anticipation for a fully kitted out and functioning Trojan.

So let's get into it. This first TANKED for 2013 is packed to the brim of juicy info, from committee change ups, advanced notice of this year's AGM, FREE oxygen provider refreshers, bushfire rescue and support efforts, and an update on our boat (Trojan) fitout. Bring on 2013!

- Ben Cashman & TUDC Exec

Mistaken Cape

Featured Dive Review

Mistaken Cape - 22nd December

"Make no mistake, this is one of Tassie's best dive sites!!! Our Trojan was filled to bursting as we prepared to wet our tackle, so the TSDC kindly gave us some relief prior to heading out to meet Miss Maria and her glorious Cape.

Eleven divers dropped onto the Mistaken Cape bommie virtually as one - you could have mistaken it for Thailand with all those bodies & bubbles except the vis was way better and the structure and colour was worlds apart.

The "Drive to Dive" scheme worked a treat with the dedicated Driver / Surface watch enabling us all in at once, surface intervalled and ready for the second drop well before lunch. Richard has scored himself a free dive day of his choice in return for prepping the boat, running it and overseeing the pack up.

The second drop saw the Trojan group doing another lap around the Cape at around 30m (instead of 40) which revealed more of her beautiful sponges and amazing structure. The TSDC crew took in Cape Moreaux further south which was said to be even better than their first dive on the Cape - so we're heading back there very soon. Which reminds me, the weather for this day was almost perfect, a very rare calm day on this exposed site although we had to be canny and work the current to our advantage in our dive plans.

So get yourselves 'dived up' with us, do your AOW , deep, nitrox etc and come and see why Tassie's diving is truly world-class!"

          - Sparky Images from Mistaken Cape

Click the thumbnails above to see more pictures in our Facebook album!


News Around The Club

Departing Committee Members - Will and Dave

Towards the end of 2012 your beloved Technical Officer - Will Bignell, and Dive Officer - Dave Page, have stepped down from their positions on the TUDC committee. Both Will and Dave will be missed at the helm, but both will be actively diving with us whenever they get a chance! We would like to thank both of you for your years of effort, time, knowledge, and experience that you have brought into our club, and for being pivotal in building the foundations of the great diving club we are today.

Remember to give the duo a personal thanks when you see them on a dive next. I think we definitely owe them a beer or two!

We'd like to take this chance to welcome Richard Mason into the fold. Richard brings his experience and knowledge in the technical and gear space, and will be helping us out with the Technical Officer tasks through until the March AGM.

Drive to Dive scheme

2013 Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Committee Positions

As we draw closer to the start of the 2013/14 dive season which kicks off on the 1st of March, we'd like to reminder you that our AGM will be held in March. Details will follow closer to the time, but our AGM is for all members to come along, have a few drinks and pizza, hear all about the year that was 2012, and to vote in our new TUDC Committee. The AGM each year is the time for our current committee members to step down, and for ANYONE that is eager and enthusiastic about diving and TUDC to look at getting on board the committee. There are definitely perks to being on the committee, and the different positions all have differing levels of commitment and responsibility. Anyone is welcome, and if you would like more information about the roles and what's expected then please send us an email to the club address!

Scubaventures FREE Oxygen Provider Refresher - Win a $100 diving voucher!

The TUDC committee and Scubaventures have been chatting. The result? Scubaventures is running an Emergency Oxygen Provider refresher day on Saturday 16th February at Tinderbox. It's free, and open to any TUDC member eager to learn about providing emergency oxygen to an individual in a diving context. If you haven't used an O2 kit before, maybe you don't know what one looks like, or even if you've completed a course and need a refresher, register on the website and come along. Everyone who signs up and turns up on the day goes into the draw to win a $100 Scubaventures voucher that you can use on any Scubaventures course.

So, grab your dive buddies, sign up on the website, and come along and learn how to save each other's life. It's a skill worth having.

Scubaventures competition

Ongoing Trojan fitout plans

Well, Trojan has been getting the once over for most of January. The ladder has been completed and welded onto the vessel, and tank racks and a brand spanking new auxiliary will be fitted by mid February just in time for the new dive season! We have a stack of smaller yet equally as important improvements going in over the next month as well, including a new radio and radar reflector; new grab lines and shot lines; rewiring and a new radio and sounder; better access areas to safety items such as epirb, fire extinguisher, O2 kit, and first aid kits.

February and March will see us trialling out the new setup, so we welcome your comments and ideas whenever you're on a dive from the mighty Trojan. Your input as a diver and dedicated member is invaluable, and with your help we can increase our club safety and make it easier for everyone to dive together.

TUDC Bushfire Appeal fundraiser efforts

With Australia being hit by savage fires over the last couple of months, we've been busy thinking of how we can help out. During the worst of the Tasman Peninsular fires, a group of TUDC members took Trojan and Thumping Willy out and joined forces with other boat drivers to run a supply and assistance mission into Pirates Bay (more on this below).

A number of the local dive clubs have also rallied together to help the local businesses in the Tasman area through running a chartered dive at Eaglehawk Dive Centre (see the dive calendar to signup) on February 9th, followed by a BBQ lunch at the dive centre, and a dinner stop off at the Dunalley pub to show our support for the amazing work they have done for the local community. The day will be broadcast around the country to raise awareness of the businesses being open for tourism, and eager to get travellers back in the area. Grab your mates and signup on the calendar, its going to be a great day on the water.

And there is one final thing we're doing to help. We're raising money for the Red Cross Bushfire Appeal and Blaze Aid, and we're asking you for any cash donations you can make. We're collecting donations in the club account and will be splitting it between the two charities above at the end of Feb, so if you can spare a couple of dollars, please include your name and 'FIRES' in the description (i.e. 'CASHMANFIRES) and transfer it to:

  • Tas Uni Dive Club
  • BSB: 067-102
  • Account Number: 00903739

TUDC's bushfire assistance mission

On the morning of 7th January, 3 days after devastating fires swept through the Tasman Peninsula, emails started flying around a few of the TUDC members. Like most Tasmanians, we were feeling helpless about what we could do to help people affected by the fires. Because of the geographic nature of the Peninsula, the closure of a single road had left the entire area completely cut off from the rest of the state. Not only had people lost their homes, properties and livestock, but with no power or any way to get supplies into the disaster zone, they were in dire need of basic essential supplies. We had heard rumours of flotillas of recreational boats heading out from Cremorne to ferrying supplies to various points on the Peninsula. After a flurry of emails and rushed phone calls we decided that TUDC would make a trip into the fire zone.

With no phone communication possible with the affected areas, it was difficult to know what supplies were most needed. However, we had heard rumours of farm animals roaming free after fences had burnt down; many of them severely injured by the fires; as well as distressed family pets that had been abandoned or fled when the fires swept through. So we armed ourselves with animal cages from the Hobart Animal Hospital, a vet, an animal handler, a doctor, boxes of animal medical supplies, a rifleman in case euthanasia was required, ~600kg of supplies and a few more keen pairs of hands. Basically, we had no idea what to expect, so we took everything...

Both Trojan (6.6m RIB) and little Thumper (4.5m aluminium Tristar) made their way down to Cremorne and left at around 3 pm chockers with supplies. The beach was full of trailers, but other boats that had been running previously in the day were struggling in to shore. We had hoped to travel as large flotilla but nobody else was game to head back out, as the weather had kicked up to a challenging 25-30 knots and 2m swell. It became immediately obvious after poking our noses out that Nubeena would be no good weather-wise. We had heard some info trickling in from other boaters that the evacuation centre set up down there was already overflowing with help, as it had been the main target of previous supply drops. So we decided to limp our way into the back end of Eaglehawk Neck as a lonely convoy of 2. On the way we spotted a boat out the back of Sloping Island that looked to be in distress so we pulled alongside to pay them a visit. It turned out they were also on their way down also but had found the conditions too challenging and had pulled in to shelter behind the island. We offloaded a bunch of their supplies onto our own boats to lighten their load and continued onwards.

Close to 2 hours and many thumping waves later, Eaglehawk began to emerge through the smoke. Having the Navionics app on my iPhone was a godsend, as the thick smoke killed any chance of natural navigation. It was pretty sobering bringing the boats in and seeing the massive expanses of charcoal and still active flames right down to the waterline around the oyster leases. Driving through the inlet we passed some houses burnt to the ground, yet only 50 m apart others were still standing with green lawns and intact flowerbeds. A lonely water bomber buzzed us the whole way in picking up loads of seawater next to us as we punched our way through the chop. It really struck me what an amazing job those guys were doing - the battle looked pretty impossible when you could see the extent of the fires still roaring up through the gullies, but I guess the few standing houses said otherwise.

We pulled into the neck to a total ghost town. With no communications it had been impossible to properly tee up news of an arrival from our end. We beached the boats and found some TFS guys who passed on a message for us to the community centre and soon a handful of people turned up with utes to ferry the gear away. They were so grateful; it sounded as though EHN had been really neglected with the massive overflow of supplies headed to Nubeena. They were stoked for us to give them news of what was going on and tell them what we'd seen of the fires and the water bombers as we came in. Apparently the beach had been packed with people only a couple of hours ago but a big police led convoy of 100 vehicles plus a bunch of people taking illegal backroads had bailed most of the stranded tourists out. We had a couple of items destined specifically for Murdunna and were planning to detour on the way home to drop them off, but these champions offered instead to run them around by road.

By the time we had finished offloading it was starting to get pretty late, so we hightailed it and headed for home. Arrived back safe and wet back in Cremorne around 7:30 pm after a much more pleasant journey back with another eerie blood red smoke haze sunset providing a dramatic backdrop.

At the time a few of us felt a little disheartened that we weren't able to do more. We had heard reports of sheep needing to be euthanased, new goat kids needing assistance etc, but with fences gone and no containment means, animals were buzzing around everywhere uncontrolled and it was difficult to do much for them. We weren't able to take any animals (pets) back with us because nobody was ready for that, and even with all the sedatives we were carrying, the trip back would have been pretty horrendous. The cages we bought with us were taken down to Nubeena along with other supplies by a local in his ute. We'd also managed to offload around 600 kg of non-perishables, gas, stoves, water, toiletries, fresh fruit and veg, newspapers, bread, first aid, pharmacy packages, medication etc. The larger boats that were starting to arrive in Nubeena to ferry people off had been unable to take animals uncontained, so we hoped that the cages would enable animals to start travelling with people on the larger boats. While pets may have been the least of people's concerns, if they had lost everything else, having their pet make it out alive could make all the difference.

The overwhelmingly positive attitudes of these people despite such adversity were just amazing, and the TUDC was stoked to be able to help out wherever possible. We're continuing our efforts to assist with the bushfire appeal by coordinating a massive interclub dive day out at Eaglehawk Neck - supporting local businesses and donating all profits to the Red Cross and Blaze Aid. Sign up now on the dive calendar now to get involved and support the bushfire recovery efforts.

          - Emma


We like to keep things fresh for you.

Every month, we will advertise another special for gear hire or discounted dives. It'll be valid for the entire duration of that month (or as specified by the deal). So check this space regularly to score yourself some bargains!



Cheap dive courses available to TUDC Members

For those of you yet to get certified, Ian from The Hobart Dive Shop (67a Argyle St - 6234 3428) is once again offering a fantastic price on Open Water courses exclusively to Tas Uni Dive Club members.

The following courses have just been posted up for February & March - jump on the Dive Shop website now for full dates and to make a booking!

  • PADI Advanced OW Course - from 2nd February: 350
  • PADI Open Water Course - from 4th February: $295 (for TUDC members!)
  • PADI Open Water Course - from 18th February: $295 (for TUDC members!)
  • PADI Rescue Diver Course - from 9th March: $250
  • PADI Open Water Course - from 11th March: $295 (for TUDC members!)
Remember, the cheap deals on the OW courses (usually $375 each) are exclusive to TUDC members, so make sure you mention you're from the Tas Uni Dive Club!

Some more upcoming dive course dates

Southern Tasmanian Divers (212 Elizabeth St - 6234 7243) also have a number of upcoming dive courses on their calendar. Check out their website for more details.

  • Open Water Course (3 upcoming courses!)
    • from Feb 19th, March 19th, April 16th


Recent Dives

Hobart Docks cleanup (20th January) - by Emma

A couple of Sundays ago, a keen team of 15 divers plus 10 shore support personnel congregated at the Hobart Docks for TUDC's annual day of post-Christmas waterfront cleanup diving. With the sun shining brightly and no construction crew to worry about this time, divers hit the water and quickly got amongst the thick of the rubbish. Spreading their efforts between Constitution Dock and the area out the front of Elizabeth Pier, several hundred kg of tyres, glass and plastic waste, clothing, cans, construction materials and more was removed. Some of the more interesting items included a Quarantine wheelie bin from the Antarctic vessels, a metal sign from a local restaurant, traffic cones and a heater.

Cleanup dive Removal of the rubbish from the water is a big focus of any TUDC cleanup day, but equally as important is the public awareness raised by the event. Being a Sunday, many members of the public walked past, and several even stopped to help us haul rubbish out of the water. We're all pretty lucky to be able to experience Tassie's beautiful marine environment, so we all felt that the least we could do was to help clean the area up a little bit. And if anyone who walked past and saw the skip bin full of rubbish stopped to think for even a few seconds about their own rubbish disposal practices and how they could make more responsible choices, then we reckon that's a pretty big victory!

Cleanup dive
A huge thanks to all divers and surface support crew who helped out on the day. Big thanks also go to Veolia for providing rubbish collection and disposal, The Hobart Dive Shop for providing free tank fills, and Fish Frenzy for feeding our hungry divers. Check out the dive calendar for the next cleanup dive on 3rd March for Clean Up Australia Day!

The ABC news report of the day can be watched online HERE!

More Fun Stuff

Following the huge fun had in Bali, Sparky is organising another trip there in June 2013. A 12 day trip with 10 day's diving inc. boats and nitrox, private accommodation, excellent food and flights will cost around $1500. Pick your own dates and itinerary or do the same dates as us and always have a trusty buddy, it's up to you.

Enquiries to Mark Mather,, 0428 390 393.

See some great video action from the last trip, including some seriously deep drop-off action, via Facebook here.

dive calendar signups

Upcoming Dives & Events

February 9th or 10th - Eaglehawk Neck
We're teaming up with local Tassie dive clubs and rallying behind the Tasman Peninsula businesses with whatever assistance we can provide. Dive clubs from all across the state will be descending on the area to utilise the services of Eaglehawk Dive Centre, together with our own boats. Dive options include Cathedral Caves, Waterfall Bay, the SS Nord, and heaps more. Dive will be one day only, Saturday OR Sunday. Contact - Ben Cashman

February 13th - Pub Night
Exams are over! Take a break at the TUDC Pub Night. Remember that Wednesday is cheap beer and pizza night! All new, old and prospective members are welcome, so come along for a beverage and/or a bite to eat. Please sign up so we can book a table big enough! Contact - dive calendar

February 16th - FREE O2 course!
Scubaventures is running an Emergency Oxygen Provider refresher day at Tinderbox. It's free, and open to any TUDC member eager to learn about providing emergency oxygen to an individual in a diving context. Contact - Cashy

March 3rd - Clean Up Australia Day
Let's help to keep our waterfront beautiful above and below water! Location to be decided, somewhere close to Hobart. FREE diving! Contact - JPK

March 9th-11th (whole weekend) - Bicheno
A long weekend of diving coupled with the Bicheno Rockpool concert! Travel home leisurely on the Monday, a public holiday. Contact - JPK


Your 2012-13 TUDC Executive
(aren't we pretty?)

  Tasmanian University Dive Club
Proudly sponsored by the TUU.
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