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Subchapter 7. General Industry Safety Orders
Group 26. Diving Operations
Article 152. Diving Operations

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§6053. Medical Requirements of Dive Team.

(a) General.

(1) The employer shall determine that dive team members who are, or are likely to be, exposed to hyperbaric conditions have passed a current physical examination and have been declared medically fit to engage in diving activities.

(2) The employer shall provide each diver with all medical examinations required by this standard.

(3) All medical examinations required by this standard shall be performed by, or under the direction of, a licensed physician.

(b) Frequency of Medical Examinations. Medical examinations shall be provided:

(1) Before an employee may dive, unless an equivalent medical examination has been given within the preceding 12 months and the employer has obtained the results of the examination and an opinion from the examining physician of the employee's medical fitness to dive.

(2) At one year intervals from the date of initial examination or last equivalent examination; and

(3) After an injury or illness requiring hospitalization of more than twenty-four (24) hours.

(4) After an episode of unconsciousness related to diving activity.

(c) Information Provided to Examining Physician. The employer shall provide the following information to the examining physician.

(1) A copy of the medical requirements of this standard;

(2) A summary of the nature and extent of the diving conditions to which the dive team member will be exposed, including diving modes and the level of physical activity which is expected.

(d) Content of Medical Examinations:

(1) Medical examinations conducted initially and annually shall consist of the following:

(A) General medical history;

(B) Diving-related medical history;

(C) Basic physical examination;

(D) The tests required by Table I; and

(E) Any additional tests the physician considers necessary.

(2) Medical examinations conducted after an injury or illness requiring hospitalization of more than 24 hours or after an episode of unconsciousness related to diving activity shall be appropriate to the nature and extent of the injury or illness as determined by the examining physician.

Table I. Tests for Diving Medical Examination Initial Annual 
                               Initial         Annual 
Test                         Examination    Reexamination 
Chest X-Ray                      X               (b) 
Visual acuity                    X                X 
Color blindness                  X 
Master's Step Test 
(or equivalent)                  X              X(a) 
Hearing Test                     X                X 
Hematocrit or hemoglobin         X                X 
Sickle cell index                X 
White cell count                 X                X 
Urinalysis                       X                X 

(a) for those age 35 or older
(b) every 2 years

(e) Physician's Written Report.

(1) After any medical examination required by this standard, the employer shall obtain a written report prepared by the examining physician which shall contain the examining physician's opinion of the employee's fitness to dive, including any recommended restrictions or limitations (See Appendix A). The report shall not include diagnosis or details unrelated to diving.

(2) The employer shall provide the employee with a copy of the physician's written report.

NOTE: Authority cited: Section 142.3, Labor Code. Reference: Section 142.3, Labor Code.

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