Cylinder pressure testing
Those who are professionally engaged in the filling of compressed air (employers in diving-firms, diving-schools, fire brigades etc.) are subject to regulations forbidding them to fill cylinders that have not been hydrostatic pressure tested within the latest two years. It is futile to try to entice such personnel to ignore these regulations.
Generally speaking diving is fairly free in Norway, but in the vicinity of military installations diving will not be permitted. These areas are usually, but not always marked on maps, so we recommend foreign divers to consult the local police or military authorities in advance, to find out about possible restrictions.
In Norway the international flag "A" (white and blue split flag) is approved as an indication of a submerged diver. The boating activity makes it essential that divers mark their presence clearly.
On account of our long traditions as a seafaring nation there are obviously many wrecks along our extensive coastline and in our long fjords. The imperative rule for wreck diving is: "Look but don''t touch!" Those who do not observe this rule will not only in many cases do irremediable harm to the wrecks, but in addition most certainly contribute substantially to the obstruction of future sport diving in Norway. For this reason we invite our guests to use their eyes, and, by all means, their cameras, but not to take anything along up or destroy anything they may see. This rule applies not only to a wreck, but also to any separate objects found under water.
Should you find an old wreck (it could be the long sought "Spanish Armada"...), the correct procedure is to mark the spot and then report to the nearest police station or maritime museum. It should be sufficient to mention the discovery of the "Runde treasure", in which case the divers (two Swedes and one Norwegian) acted according to the rules.
The Norwegian authorities have passed a rule against fishing lobster by other means than the lobster pots that the regular fishermen use. It is therefore illegal for divers to take lobster with their hands or in similar ways. It is also illegal to catch fresh-water crayfish. Spear fishing is legal, but restricted. That is to say; it is illegal to use any type of artificial light, and to fish for salmon or trout. We emphasize also that spear guns, or harpoons, are considered to be weapons, and should be treated in such a manner, that is; loaded and used strictly under water. Divers are free to catch crabs, as long as they measure at least 13 centimetres across the back.
Confiscation of equipment
Norwegian legislation provides the police and other official personnel with the right to carry out inspections and, if necessary, confiscations in cases where a diver has applied his or her equipment illegally. Not only objects unlawfully taken up may be confiscated, but also equipment that has been used for that purpose. The same applies where illegal fishing is concerned. Don't take the risk of having your embassy pay your fare home while your good equipment stays in this country.
A special permission has to be obtained from the harbour authorities before attempting to dive in harbour areas.