Diving conditions were fine leading up to Hurricane Ian earlier last week. But I do think the threat of Ian kept a lot of customers and visitors home until the certainty of this thing was figured out.  

Not a lot of diving goes on in the days leading up to a potential weather threat. When there is a threat looming, what we do, and what I recommend others do, is a little storm prep on our boats and business. One of the first things we do is clean up the docks and surrounding area. Make sure there’s nothing that could blow around and damage your home or your neighbor’s.  

If it’s becoming obvious that a storm is heading our way, then shutter up those windows and doors. Because our shops are on the water, we sandbag the doors. As for the boats, similar concepts as the business. Make sure all loose items are stowed. All tops are down, eisenglass open and secured. Another very important step is to ensure the bilges are working properly and your scuppers are clean and no debris will block them.  

And finally if you can’t haul out, make sure your boat is tied properly. There are many resources to help you with this depending on your location and situation. Obviously there are many other steps in preparing for a hurricane; these are but a few important ones. For more information on this check out, www.monroecountyem.com or www.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/before.html.


Stay tuned for more information on whether dive boats will be running this weekend and if I.CARE will be planting. 


Recycle and reuse is the tip for this week. Less trash, less waste, better for our oceans.


Friday – Chance of showers 40%, winds out of southwest, 17 mph.

Saturday – Mostly sunny, winds southwest, 10 mph.

Sunday – Isolated thunderstorms 30% winds out of the west, 7 mph.

Eric Billips is is the owner, captain and instructor at Islamorada Dive Center and Floridia Keys Dive Center. He specializes in scuba, rebreather, spearfishing and captaining in the Florida Keys