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August 1999 Vol. 14, No. 8   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Counting Divers Down

from the August, 1999 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

Counting Divers DownThree divers diving with Dixie Divers off Deerfield Beach, Florida, were left behind on May 24 when the boatís novice captain forgot to count heads after an afternoon dive and headed back to shore without them. The captain of the dive boat Get Down admitted, ďItís all my fault. I made a mistake.Ē The divers had to dodge speedboats and water scooters for 45 minutes before they managed to flag down a fishing boat to bring them in.

Itís hard to fathom why operators omit a safety measure as crucial as head counts, and itís also hard to imagine what might force them to count heads if common sense doesnít. Australia tried to address the problem by passing a law requiring head counts before boats departed a dive site, but the law wasnít much help to Louisiana divers Thomas and Eileen Lonergan, who perished off Queensland when they were left at sea by the dive boat Outer Edge in January, 1998 (see Undercurrentís 3/98, 4/98, 10/98, and 3/99 issues).

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