I dive here on Kauai with a lot of people who are new to scuba. Many of the same questions get asked, including the inevitable “What about sharks?” My standard answer is “Let’s cross our fingers and hope we get to see one today.”
The real motivation behind a question like that is the same as with several of the other standard questions: Is it safe to scuba dive? Yes! In fact, not only is it safe, it is safer to be diving than to not be diving!!! Let me explain.
According to National Geographic, over 17,000 people die from falls each year. That’s a 1 in 218 chance over your lifetime, compared to a 1 in 3,700,000 chance of being killed by a shark. It is a scientific fact that you cannot fall while exploring underwater.
Nat Geo also reports that in 1996, toilets injured 43,000 Americans. Sharks injured 13. There are two noteworthy things about that statistic. First is that sharks injured – not killed – only 13 people that year. Second is that it is clearly more dangerous to poop than to swim in the ocean. Ask yourself, have I ever been afraid to poop? If the answer is yes then please don’t call Garden Isle Divers because you have issues that we don’t want to be a part of.
Not convinced yet? Okay, I just hope you aren’t sitting under a coconut palm reading this because Falling coconuts cause about 150 deaths annually. You might think “Wow, somebody needs to get those coconuts out of the trees before they fall and kill somebody.” Sure, except for the fact that falls from ladders cause about 355 deaths annually in the U.S.
As you can clearly see, your best chance at living a long and adventurous life is to go scuba diving on a regular basis. You avoid so many of the true dangers that life likes to throw at us. So, let’s go explore Kauai’s coral reefs together while your friends, who give in to irrational fears, get bit by Malaria-carrying mosquitoes which kill about 800,000 people every year.