The Brown Eels
Hopefully things will be very slithery here.
The Eels on Wheels started in 1991 as a group of individuals associated with St. David's Rehabilitation Hospital Aquatic Program in Austin, TX. There, Tim Skelly, H.S.A Instructor Tom McCoy, and others were teaching people with special needs and/or disabilities how to adapt and learn the sport of SCUBA Diving. Following a dive trip to Bonaire, the Eels on Wheels organization was formed to promote the sport of Adaptive Diving.
Adaptive Diving is just that: making the adaptations needed so that anyone, regardless of circumstances, can safely learn and participate in SCUBA diving.
The Handicapped SCUBA Association (HSA) certifies the instructors, divers, and dive buddies. HSA utilizes three levels of certification:
* Level A divers are certified to dive with one person. * Level B divers need two divers with them. * Level C divers must be accompanied by two divers with one being a rescue diver.
The Eels consist of both "Able Bodied" and "Adaptive" divers, although everyone involved considers themselves Adaptive Divers because of the training they all share. Eels on Wheels membership includes persons with disabilities, health-care professionals, and volunteer divers with specialized instruction as dive buddies.