Scuba diving is a great hobby that millions of people do every year all over the world. You get to see new species of fish and colorful plant life but what most people don’t do is hang out underwater for more than 2 days at a time.
That’s right that is now the world record for the longest saltwater scuba dive.
In July of 2015 the Egyptian scuba diver set a new Guinness World Record for the longest saltwater scuba dive, he stayed completely underwater for a total time of 51 hours and 20 minutes. Crazy…right! The record breaking dive took place at the Red Sea Resort just off of Hurghada, Egypt and he dove to a depth of about 33 feet or 10 meters, the water temperature was about 22C or if you prefer Fahrenheit that’s about 72F.
It should go without saying that you shouldn’t try this at home, but just in case…DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME. Dives like this take months if not years of planning and preparation and they are dangerous if you try them unprepared. You need to plan against hypothermia and decompression, even at a shallow depth of just 10 meters. Hafez made use of both a dry suit and a battery powered heating system to keep warm during the dive. Being immersed in water even relatively warm water can lower your body temperature quickly which is why these dives are so dangerous.
He planned his diet out ahead of time to make sure that blood sugar and blood chemistry stayed stable the entire time. This means he took energy drinks and meals through a straw while underwater.
A Little About Waala Hafez
This dive allowed him to beat the previous record dive set the year before of 51 hours and 4 minutes that was set by an American diver named Allen Sherrod. The first thing you need to understand is that Hafez was in peak physical condition, he is not someone who dives twice a year on a vacation. He is a pilot at the Suez Canal Authority and also spent time as a former special forces Navy Seal team leader. He is a self defense instructor and an IDEA master instructor. At 36 years old he is in incredible physical condition. The self-discipline from the special forces training was instrumental in making this feat possible.
Not only did Hafez want to complete the world’s longest dive and become a Guinness World Record holder, he had a secondary goal of promoting tourism in Egypt and in his words to “motivate Egyptian youth to use their skills, imagination and abilities to flourish in their own country.”