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muddkatt

RO# 27304

Posted - Nov 12 2008 :  22:23:47  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
http://blogs.tampabay.com/breakingnews/2008/11/two-divers-miss.html

November 12, 2008
Bodies of missing divers found

HUDSON -- Authorities found the bodies this evening of two divers from Hillsborough County who have been missing since Tuesday.

The two men were recovered from School Sink, a popular spot for underwater cave diving off Old Dixie Highway in northwest Pasco.

The Pasco County Sheriff's Office has not released their ages or identities, as the families have not yet been notified. Recovery divers under contract with the Sheriff's Office entered the water about 5:55 p.m. and found the bodies within a half hour.

Preliminary information indicates that one of the men was found near the entrance to the site, less than 50 feet from the surface, sheriff's spokesman Kevin Doll said. The other man was found in a side tunnel. The deaths are being investigated, Doll said, and it is unknown at this time what caused the mishap.

A vehicle belonging to one of the men was found near the underwater cave, Doll said. The diving spot, which is not accessible to the public, is part of the underground aquifer with miles of tunnels and numerous entry points in west Pasco.

The property is owned by a local chapter of the National Speleological Society, which uses it for cave diving. Paul Heinerth, the group's property manager, told the Times in August that only the most experienced divers may try the cave, also dubbed "Wayne's World." Heinerth requires every diver to have completed at least 100 dives.

Despite its "No Trespassing" signs, the property draws uninvited visitors, too, including a Hudson woman who drowned there in August.

Times staff writer

Ken

1997 Wellcraft Eclipse 2400S
5.7 Volvo Penta tweaked to 330HP
DP-S DuoProp w/F6 props
FWC system by Monitor Products

Homeport: Tarpon Springs, Fl.

king5899

RO# 19628

Posted - Nov 12 2008 :  22:59:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That's a shame. I love diving, but cave diving would spook me. Every story I have heard about deaths in caves usually is because of lack of experience or equipment.

My prayers go out to their families.

MJK


2003 Cruisers Yachts 3372
"Party of Five"

Homeport: Stony Point Bay Marina, NY - FKA "D" Dock Go to Top of Page

Capt. Bill1

RO# 2017

Posted - Nov 12 2008 :  23:31:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sad. I wonder if they were trained cave divers or if the snuck in.


Homeport: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale Go to Top of Page

November Charlie

RO# 824

Posted - Nov 13 2008 :  19:21:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Some info posted elsewhere indicates that one diver was found with his isolator shut down (didn't say anything about the status of the left side), and the other had some sort of entanglement (didn't say if it was the goldline, or his own main reel, or what).

Also mentioned one of them had switched to 100 percent below 50 feet, so at least he went peacefully (ox-toxing is -supposedly- painless, and peaceful. The part you'd still be conscious for, anyway.) I suppose any gas is better than any water, though.


My signature line is cooler than your signature line.

Homeport: Northwest Go to Top of Page

Capt. Bill1

RO# 2017

Posted - Nov 13 2008 :  23:35:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm not sure how painless it is. You go into convulsions.

Plus:

"Muscle twitching and spasm
nausea and vomiting
dizziness
vision (tunnel vision) and hearing difficulties (tinnitus)
twitching of facial muscles
irritability, confusion and a sense of impending doom
trouble breathing, anxiety
unusual fatigue
incoordination
convulsion.

Convulsion at depth in water usually results in drowning or arterial gas embolism and is prevented by not using oxygen breathing with SCUBA and by limiting oxygen exposure with hyperbaric oxygen therapy 100% O2 greater than 60 FSW."


I think you're thinking of the slow reduction in oxygen content. With that you just go to sleep/pass out from what I understand.



Homeport: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale Go to Top of Page

Ghost

RO# 689



Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  00:29:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bill is correct. With a hypoxic mix, you might get lucky and just pass out. But, with a hyperoxic mix such as breathing 100% at 50ft, the most likely result is violent convulsions. The only thing worse is knowing what comes next. Still, any gas is better than no gas and you might just get lucky and tolerate the high partial pressure long enough.

There are a number of indicators here.

1.) An isolator valve tells they were wearing doubles.
2.) 100% oxygen means they were planning on a staged decompression.

From those two things we can say they were likely more than just recreational divers. The oxygen itself is a dead giveaway they had some kind of training and had at least some relevant gear. Usually, its an 80% mix for pretenders, so if the 100% o2 was correct, that says something.

These things are not quite as prevalent as they were years ago when what was allowable as "cave diving" was in greater dispute. We lost 3 in just one month, off of one web board I used to be on. That was even before they started writing books about them, trying to come up with creative excuses to justify the bad practices eventually promoting some of the worst offenders onto the discovery channel.

Anyhow, a closed isolator SHOULD mean a gear failure of some sort. But, it's not always that simple. Some clowns used to actually start a dive with a closed isolator as a way of diving two different mixes on their back (I remember a guy like that and might have violated the never leave your buddy rule on that day). Silly, but it has been done. If you have a gear failure, that's when you get in physical contact with your buddy and the line. Why? Because often that's when things go to sheisse, buoyancy gets whacked in the commotion, that causes fins to hit the dirt, which causes silt, now you can't see (which really sucks when your trying to figure out how to get your gear breathing again), a little bit of panic sets in, which for some reason makes the guideline act like a tangle magnet, which makes you freak out more, break the line and now your truly f'ed if you don't have the presence of mind to un-foxtrot the situation and make a controlled search for the line (which is probably right next to you).

In the end, it all comes down to training on very basic skills. Buddy awareness, gas management and being ready to execute on your training at a moments notice. Brainstem skills. You don't need to see. Your buddy has all the gas you need. All you have to do is work as a team, get joined at the hip and exit the damn cave starting now. Bonus points for getting your own gear back along the way. When you fail like this, its because you spent to much time "going" and not enough time "practicing".

Sucks big time. Especially when somebody else has to go get them later. Just about as much fun as the wreck diving equivalent of trying to figure out the best knot to tie the floater off onto the swimstep with.

Reminds me why I got out of that gig...


What part of GALE WARNING did you not understand?

Homeport: Everett Wa Go to Top of Page

Ghost

RO# 689



Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  02:44:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Well...I thought I was going to have to make "the call" to find out what really happened. Which I didn't want to do because I'd be sucked back in for something or other. But the details are openly available. Two guys, neither cave trained. One was truly just a recreational diver, who willfully gamed the system to go beyond his capabilities, the other an intro level novice. Sounds like they were openly posting on a discussion board, others trying to give them good advice and still they went into an advanced cave with zero skills anyway. It's just not something you get out of. Trust me, when you are learning this sort of stuff, the only "setup" the instructor usually does is to turn out someone's light. Next thing you know, the students just create everything else. Masks come off, entanglements happen, buddy's get separated. The whole thing just explodes from task loading. The students always think the instructor did all sorts of stuff. It's almost never required. So, when the inexperienced go into a cave, it's the same thing only not a drill. As soon as the tinyest of issues arise, suddenly everything explodes into a massive charlie foxtrot and you have bodies. You have no idea how quickly it happens and in a cave, without being fully functional, you can't surface, you can't breathe and you can't see your way out. You're just dead, but only after knowing your going to die in the worst possible way while in full, please kill me now, panic mode.

I've never actually been in a cave. We don't have them out here. But technical diving was born of cave diving. We treat wrecks as if they were a cave and adopted the same rules, training and discipline. All the same principles are in play if done correctly, except how you get out of the water. If you want to understand what cave diving is all about, start by reading Sheck Exley's book "Caverns Measureless to Man". Most of our guys later cross trained in cave and routinely fly to Florida and other places just for the cave experience. I was in the middle of planning my own trip just before I got out of it. This stuff is addictive. Read the book. Not only does it capture the whole idea behind cave, it also gives a very real life pictorial of the "migration" many of us went through years ago to adopt and evolve into what is considered "safe" today. Keep in mind that some of us were doing deep stuff long before the "rules" were laid down like they are today, or mix was available or widely understood. There is no reason why people have to discover this on their own anymore. People get in trouble today due to wilfull ignorance.

You have no idea how much this stuff infuriates me though. I've been in one too many web conversations with people who argued stupid stuff and then were not there the next day to argue the point back again. I used to keep a list and stopped when it got into double digits. Another good game is to go through the old Immersed mags and see how many pages you can count before you run across dead guys. Then for a few years I just took pot shots whenever I could, not trying to argue just humiliate, and then quit the discussion boards altogether. ****ty way to win an argument.



What part of GALE WARNING did you not understand?

Homeport: Everett Wa Go to Top of Page

muddkatt

RO# 27304

Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  10:34:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nice write ups Ghost. Your answers pretty much echo what the GF's dad said. He is a retired diver that knows his stuff. Sad part of this story and many others like it is they were warned and chose to ignore the "over-cautious" advice.

Ken



1997 Wellcraft Eclipse 2400S
5.7 Volvo Penta tweaked to 330HP
DP-S DuoProp w/F6 props
FWC system by Monitor Products

Homeport: Tarpon Springs, Fl. Go to Top of Page

November Charlie

RO# 824

Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  17:47:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Indeed. I can't recall where I read it - it may have even been in one of the books about the Doria or U-Boat dives - but it alleged that one would drift peacefully into unconsciousness by that point. I don't think I really buy into that. Especially in light of a report that DAN published (I think DAN published it - it was in a recent pretty-fishies-diving magazine under "Lessons For Life") about someone on a SCR on a wreck. He was trying to pull a spike out of the wreck, overexerted himself, thereby pulling too much oxygen into the loop (not clear myself on how semi-closed circuit rebreathers work, so forgive me if I seem to not understand what I'm talking about. I don't.) Thought it was bad gas in the loop, so he kept purging the loop, pulling a more and more hyperoxic gas into it. Turned out he was ox-toxing because of the strong mix too deep, and narrowly survived to tell about it.


Any which way you slice it, it's still bad juju.

quote:
Originally posted by Capt. Bill1

I'm not sure how painless it is. You go into convulsions.

Plus:

"Muscle twitching and spasm
nausea and vomiting
dizziness
vision (tunnel vision) and hearing difficulties (tinnitus)
twitching of facial muscles
irritability, confusion and a sense of impending doom
trouble breathing, anxiety
unusual fatigue
incoordination
convulsion.

Convulsion at depth in water usually results in drowning or arterial gas embolism and is prevented by not using oxygen breathing with SCUBA and by limiting oxygen exposure with hyperbaric oxygen therapy 100% O2 greater than 60 FSW."


I think you're thinking of the slow reduction in oxygen content. With that you just go to sleep/pass out from what I understand.



My signature line is cooler than your signature line.

Homeport: Northwest Go to Top of Page

Flutterby

RO# 14378

Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  18:11:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Survival of the fittest.



Homeport: California Sierras/Gold Country Go to Top of Page

Capt. Bill1

RO# 2017

Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  18:33:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
"Sounds like they were openly posting on a discussion board"

Which board?



Homeport: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale Go to Top of Page

king5899

RO# 19628

Posted - Nov 14 2008 :  19:56:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Flutterby

Survival of the fittest.




It's more like "survival of the smartest" down there. You don't have to be a genius to dive, but you need to think both before and during the dive. Proper training, proper planning, well maintained equipment and the right conditions make diving a safe and exciting sport. Mess with one of those three and it can be fatal.

MJK


2003 Cruisers Yachts 3372
"Party of Five"

Homeport: Stony Point Bay Marina, NY - FKA "D" Dock Go to Top of Page

Ghost

RO# 689



Posted - Nov 15 2008 :  01:07:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Capt. Bill1

"Sounds like they were openly posting on a discussion board"

Which board?



I'm not getting in the middle of that. Do your own search for Wayne's World.


What part of GALE WARNING did you not understand?

Homeport: Everett Wa Go to Top of Page

dancerscap

RO# 20150

Posted - Nov 15 2008 :  01:26:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I live less than a mile from the sink, and I dive. But I got into scuba for open water. At night I turn on a light before I go to the head, no way I'd do caves. I didn't even particularly enjoy Blue Grotto.


Homeport: Hudson,Fl. Go to Top of Page

Capt. Bill1

RO# 2017

Posted - Nov 15 2008 :  22:53:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
OK, thanks Ghost.


Homeport: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale Go to Top of Page

rnbenton

RO# 31163



Posted - Apr 06 2009 :  12:10:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Kudos to Ghost! I've been diving since 1965 and hold a Dive Master certification for more than 30 years. I am also trained and certified in mixed gas and wreck diving. Caves? Never been in one and not trained in it. I have, however, read lots of reports of caving diving "accidents" resulting in death. I can say that 99.9% of the deaths I have read about are the fesult of either uneducated, inexperienced, foolish or down right stupid behavior on the part of one or more of the divers. Equipment failure for a trained diver, especially with the redundancy called for in cave diving, is little more than an inconvenience. You simply deal with it and live to dive another day. The motto should always be IF YOU AREN'T TRAINED IN IT AND EXPERIENCED IN IT, DON'T DO IT!When I first got my Open Water certification in 1965 my instructor repeated the same mantra; "There are old divers and there are bold divers. But, there are NO old, bold divers". :)

Key West 196 Bay Reef, 150 Yamaha
USCG 50 Ton MMC, Tow Assist Endorsement
SSI Certified Instructor Level 1


Homeport: Palm Coast, FL Go to Top of Page
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