Stranded, Scuba Divers Left Behind [Video]

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Believe it or not, but it is not uncommon for dive operators to pull away from a dive site before they realize they left a diver behind.

As horrible and irresponsible it sounds, it does happen.  A dive operator leaves a dive site only to discover that a diver is missing.  It is quoted in the following blog post, cited below, that one dive operator actually counted fins on the dive deck to determine if everyone was back.

Moral of the story: Some dive boats, even in First World countries, still don’t have foolproof systems to count divers before departing dive sites. Some boats do have good systems, either voluntarily or because the country they operate in requires it. But there are boats, from Key Largo to Komodo, that can be lax, even downright sloppy, in ensuring everyone is back aboard. That’s why you must find out what their diver-counting system is before you jump off the boat.

Read more here on undercurrent.org

As simple as it seems, the lack of a reliable basic counting system is the root of  the problem.  Tagging systems such as the Dan Diver I.D System as well as the ScubaDiverTag Diver Down system  provides convenient and easy way to track divers that are in the water.

Open Water filmmakers Chris Kentis and Laura Lau say the inspiration for their low-budget movie, shot during the couple’s weekends and vacations, was the real-life story of Thomas and Eileen Lonergan. The young Americans, who never were found, were stranded in 1998 when their 26-passenger vessel departed without them from a popular dive site along Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. The incident prompted a tightening of the Queensland dive industry’s already stringent safety rules.

Read more here on USAtoday.com

Nautilus LifeLine Marine GPS Rescue Radio w/ free Coil Lanyard

Nautilus LifeLine Marine GPS Rescue Radio w/ free Coil Lanyard

If in the unlikely event you are left behind. The following suggestions are recommended by scubadiving.com

  • Do a 360 – Look for land, boats or anythibng to hold onto
  • Send up a signal – use a surface-marker buoy or a signal mirror to attract attention. A GPS beacon is the best option here.
  • Conserve Energy – dont fight the current when swimming
  • Stay Warm – You can hug your knees to try and keep warm.
  • Keep Calm , but prepare to fight if sharks find you.

The GoPro video below is Scuba Diver stranded 30 miles form the coast of Bundaberg, Queensland for six hours before being rescued.

Images Source: YouTube Clips

See next page below for video coverage of a stranded spear fishing scuba diver’s experience.

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