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Narcosis Charters; WPB FL, LOST Diver Today?

Discussion in 'Accidents and Incidents' started by dumpsterDiver, Sep 11, 2011.

  1. dumpsterDiver

    dumpsterDiver Banned

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Turns out I know someone on the boat. The guy did not try to swim away from the boat or swim west underwater etc. as indicated by some others.:shakehead:

    The story is much more mundane than that.

    I got some information from a person on the boat. They were diving the Corridor which I estimate to be roughly 1/3 mile (or more) stretch of wrecks and other artificial material dumped in a north/ south orientation. Depth is 75-80 feet. The lost diver was with a buddy for 25 minutes doing a normal dive over the structure. The diver did not try to deliberately swim west and be lost from the boat.

    The diver was experienced and was repeatedly asked by more than one person if they had a safety sausage (smb). Diver knew it was required, yet both he and his female buddy did not have them.

    The lost diver’s buddy ascended after approximately 30 minutes of time underwater and reported that separation from her buddy occurred at approximately the 25 minute mark (just 5 minutes before getting on the boat).

    This information was relayed to the dive operator, so they knew the guy was alone and would therefore be alerted to look for him. There was no indication that there was a serious problem, just a simple buddy separation.

    The lost diver was experienced and was diving with a high pressure, large capacity single steel tank. I did not get any information about how long he was submerged.

    Everyone else was picked up from the drift dive and things were uneventful with the exception of the now confirmed missing/over-due diver.

    The boat began to search north (down current). Later the vessel operator reported the diver as lost.

    The lost diver is reported to have drifted north, saw all the vessels and helo looking for him and waived from the surface but was not observed. HE DID NOT HAVE A SMB as required by the boat operator.

    Eventually a kayaker saw him and TOWED him a considerable distance inshore to the park.

    We did observe some kayakers far offshore that day.

    Still doesn’t really explain why he was never found under such perfect conditions by all the resources deployed that day.
    fdarden and Tricia like this.
  2. danvolker

    danvolker Dive Shop

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Lake Worth, Florida, United States
    It is very strange.... I was on Shearwater when this happened, and we ran north of the corridor after this had happened...you could see divers from other boats from a very long way off..as I was watching scuba clubs people bobbing up and down repeately, with amusement :)

    If a kayaker picked him up, he must still have been way west.....I will ask around tommorow and see if anyone remembers seeing the kayaks, and where they were in relation to the beach. :)
  3. Reef_Haven

    Reef_Haven Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Winter Haven (Central FL)
    Way to look out for your separated female buddy!:shakehead:
    Jax, Tricia and danvolker like this.
  4. cgvmer

    cgvmer Divemaster Candidate

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New Jersey
    Now that is same ocean buddy. What ever happened to the lost buddy drill of look around for a minute then safely surface.
    Tricia likes this.
  5. danvolker

    danvolker Dive Shop

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Lake Worth, Florida, United States
    This guy needs his own special tee shirt....It will say " Your on your own Dive Team or YOYODT :D
    AfterDark and ctyhallcoolio like this.

    WSOPFAN Barracuda

    Fishy indeed........
  7. Tricia

    Tricia Barracuda

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Paris, France
    Thanks to Dan and Dumpster for keeping us updated on this one. We now know the real story is not as awful as it first sounded, but I still think this guy is a creep for not coming up and thanking people for looking for him. When I think of the time and money involved searching for him (not to mention the fact that another diver could have been injured while searching), I want to scream!

    I'm curious to see if the government authorities try to bill him for the search. I think they should. It sounds like he didn't even do the standard lost buddy protocol when he got separated. This was just dumb.

    cowdog77 and LynnB like this.
  8. crbbndiver

    crbbndiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives:
    Location: Palm Beach, Florida
    OK...Now for the real story. I was on Narcosis that day (one of the divers doing the recovery dive) and have gotten the real version since. All that has been said before about the day is accurate. The conditions were ideal for diving. There is no way that an inexperienced captain could lose a diver, much less Van. The diver accepted an assist to shore from a Kayaker. He claims that he surfaced and Van didn't see him. With the lake like conditions, and the number of boats looking for him, there is no way that this part could be true. He didn't have a safety sausage, which is required on Narcosis (they ask each diver and lend one to those who don't have one). What a pinhead! Oh, by the way, he ditched his dive buddy after 25 minutes. This tells you something about the guy. I am looking here because I understand that he is on Scubaboard bad mouthing Van! This was 100% the diver's fault. Van is meticulous about picking up the divers and counting as they come in. I dive seperate from the group and have never had an issue on this boat. The diver did everything wrong and honestly, should be charged for the search.
    AfterDark and Jax like this.
  9. crbbndiver

    crbbndiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives:
    Location: Palm Beach, Florida
    Sandy's Sunday came from the north looking for the diver. If it had gone as the diver said, she would have been on the right line to see him. Sandy has a pretty good ability to see divers. With the conditions, she would have seen him. There were other boats that deliberately went to the North looking for him. There is no way this went as he said.

    I got in the water with this guy and his buddy. Spear fishermen are dropped seperately from the rest of the group on Narcosis (Love that!). We were to swim about 5 degrees East to encounter the 80' patch off shore of the Corridor. I got to the patch after a minute or two. They could have followed me but didn't. They never saw the 80' patch. This guy was sprung from the start.
  10. VooDooGasMan

    VooDooGasMan Solo Diver

    Captain van has charged rec dive boats and has circled them with his big boat to swamp them, Rob the fella diver who got hit from a boat was the one where his divers were charged.

    That being said and van is being closely watched of his attitude on the water and his captain skills, this is another that divers no longer want him captaining a large vessel or any for that matter. One thing is for sure van must be very careful on all chaters for the rest of his captain charter life.

    crbb who is the member mouthing him on SB?

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