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Missing Diver at Lake Pleasant

Discussion in 'Accidents & Incidents' started by scubajcf, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. scubajcf

    scubajcf Dive Travel Professional

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Arizona
    1,092
    12
    Anyone know anything?

    PEORIA, AZ - Maricopa County Sheriff's Office divers are searching for a missing scuba diver at Lake Pleasant.

    MCSO spokesman Jeff Sprong said a small group was diving near Waddell Dam around 11 a.m. Saturday and when they went under for a dive all but one resurfaced.

    The Peoria Fire Department said it was about five minutes before the group noticed the 48-year-old man was missing.

    Sheriff's office divers are now searching the area in a recovery effort.

    Check back for updates.
     
  2. scubajcf

    scubajcf Dive Travel Professional

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Arizona
    1,092
    12
    Update:


    The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office dive team is searching Lake Pleasant for a scuba diver who went missing around noon Saturday, authorities said.

    A small group went diving in Lake Pleasant near the dam around noon and when the team surfaced one of their divers was missing, said Sheriff's Office spokesman Jeff Sprong.

    Sheriff's officials were called and began searching for diver. Officials haven't released the name, age or gender of the missing diver.

    Officials were expected to call off the search once the sun went down, with plans to resume Sunday morning, Sprong said.



    Read more: Scuba diver missing in Lake Pleasant
     
  3. Jax

    Jax Deplorable American ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
    26,637
    8,761
    Source for above:

    by Ofelia Madrid - Oct. 16, 2010 06:46 PM
    The Arizona Republic

    FYI of those of you who don't know, Lake Pleasant is near Phoenix, AZ.

    Prayers for all those involved, friends, family, and responders.
     
  4. ScubaSteve2000

    ScubaSteve2000 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Phoenix, AZ
    761
    22
    ABC15 is reporting that the diver is 48 years old. Very sad day. Our thoughts go out to the diver's family.
    I was at VP today and saw a flury of activity with MCSO boats. A helicopter came in but I couldn't tell if it was the sherriff's dept or newsies. I didn't know if there was some sort of injury on board. I couldn't tell if it was one of the dive boats or a private boat. Very sad day.
     
  5. mudchick

    mudchick Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Phoenix, AZ
    217
    6
    Does anyone have any information on a diver lost near the dam at Lake Pleasant today?
     
  6. diversteve

    diversteve always tired Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location:
    26,281
    5,857
  7. Jax

    Jax Deplorable American ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
    26,637
    8,761
    Posted: 10/16/2010
    Last Updated: 7 hours and 22 minutes ago
    By: Jennifer Parks


    PEORIA, AZ - Maricopa County Sheriff's Office divers have called off the search for the night for a missing scuba diver at Lake Pleasant.

    Peoria Fire Capt. Billy Morris said a small group was diving near Waddell Dam around 11:30 a.m. Saturday and when they went under for a dive all but one resurfaced.

    "There's three groups of four, in their dive teams and they were only down for a little bit and one of the members got away from the group and they never found him again and he never surfaced," Morris said.

    Morris said it was about five minutes before the group noticed the 48-year-old man was missing.

    What happened to the diver is still a mystery.

    From noon until nightfall MCSO divers used a remote camera to search the lake where the man went in but there was no sign of him.

    "When there's 200 feet of water and a lot of area, obviously the currents aren't that big and they're not moving around a lot, but it's quite a big area," Morris said.

    Fellow divers say there's any number of scenarios that could have happened to the man.

    "It's so easy to get disoriented and not know what direction you're going," said Kelly Stellar.

    Lake Pleasant fisherman Larry Courtemash says the man could have been trapped by something.

    "It doesn't have to be a tree down there," said Courtemash. "It could be fishing line down there that you are tangled in and it's tough to get out of it unless you've got a knife."

    The search was suspended around 7:30 p.m. and divers will return early Sunday, according to MCSO spokesman Jeff Sprong.
     
  8. Jax

    Jax Deplorable American ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
    26,637
    8,761
    "Divers will not go into the water until [the remote camera] pinpoints the location . . ."





    Does anyone know the vis in that area?
     
  9. ScubaSteve2000

    ScubaSteve2000 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Phoenix, AZ
    761
    22
    Vis is always better away from the shore line but with the lake so low right now I would be surprised if the vis at the old dam is better than 10-15 feet.
     
  10. Gdaaym8z

    Gdaaym8z Dive Shop

    # of Dives:
    Location: Scottsdale, Arizona, United States
    242
    2
    I first want to say that everyone involved in this is in my thoughts and I hope the MCSO guys are able to make a quick and safe recovery.

    I have heard that the group on the boat was Coast Guard Auxiliary, not sure if they were just doing recreational dives or training. IF what the news is reporting is correct then it was just recreational. I won't make any further speculation.

    I dive the old Waddell Dam quite a bit and can at least give a little insight to that. First of all, it’s an old dam that is under water. When the new dam was built they cut a pretty large breach into to old dam (about 220 feet across) this is usually where a dive boat will tie into the dam at one side of the breach or the other. The top of the dam is at about 50-60 feet this time of year, depending on the lake level.

    I’m not sure what current conditions are but three weeks ago there was very little visibility, from zero to 10 feet depending on depth and how close you got to the end of the dam where it meets “land” From what I’ve been hearing the visibility is still bad. I’m headed out there today and will post the conditions this afternoon.

    Once again, depending on the current lake level the top of the dam is between 50-60 feet and it can go to below 200 feet at the bottom If this is where they are searching for the missing diver, the conditions at the bottom are downright scary. There are huge blocks of concrete and rebar and it's a jumbled up mess. I have some friends who did a tech dive here to try and recover some lost gear and they said that when they got down into the rebar that they thumbed the dive, it was just to dangerous.

    The link below is about the breaching of the dam and there's some pretty good photos.

    The breaching of the Old Waddell Dam
     

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