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Updated June 12, 2023

Fire Destroys Red Sea Liveaboard
All the Back-Issues of Undercurrent are Now Available Online
Cruise Liners Next to Dive Sites
What's Going on in the Maldives?
You are reading our free mid-month email
Do You Work at a Dive Center or on a Liveaboard? Have you ever declined a customer because they were too old to dive?
Need to Renew Your Passport Fast?
Egyptian Day Boat Runs Aground
Fancy Your Own Liveaboard?
Great Shark Snapshot Needs You
Shark Attacks
Little Cayman’s Pirates Point is for sale for US$7.5 million
Carlton Queen – the Capsizing
What You Missed in the Last Undercurrent
You are reading our free mid-month email

MY Hurricane on fire

Fire Destroys Red Sea Liveaboard:   June 12, 2023

Three English divers are confirmed dead after a June 11 fire destroyed, the MY Hurricane, the first liveaboard vessel in the extensive Tornado Marine Fleet in Egypt’s Red Sea. The fire apparently started about 6:30 a.m. Early reports say it was caused by an electrical fault in the engine room below the dive deck. Twelve rescued passengers were taken to land. The steel-hulled vessel, which carried oxygen tanks to support CCR divers, has been a favorite with British divers for more than two decades. More about it in the July issue of Undercurrent. Here is a video of the fire.

All the Back-Issues of Undercurrent are Now Available Online.   June 12, 2023

We recently added issues from 1975 -- 1993. If you want to immerse yourself in history you can read what we were saying about the scuba diving industry from 1975-2020 and it’s free for anyone to read. Later issues are available only to subscribers.

Celebrity Equinox anchored close to the Devil's Grotto dive site

Cruise Liners Next to Dive Sites.  June 12, 2023

Cayman divers had plenty to worry about on May 18 when the cruise liner Celebrity Equinox anchored close to the Devil's Grotto dive site. Eden Rock dive center couldn't take divers to the site until the vessel had departed. While the ship was within the port zone, it nevertheless highlights the problems cruise ships cause in the harbor. No recognizable damage was done, but environmental activists remain concerned about the impact huge cruise ships have on marine life when they anchor so close to coral reefs. Divers from the Department of Environment confirmed that the ship was not in the marine protected area and anchored on the sand, not on coral. (Cayman News Service)

What's Going on in the Maldives?   June 12, 2023

Two divers died in separate incidents on consecutive March mornings at a popular dive site at Rasdhoo, a small atoll north of Ari Atoll. A 46-year-old man died while diving at Hammerhead Point on March 14, while a 65-year-old man died the following day. To see schooling scalloped hammerheads at Rasdhoo, one must get in the water before the sun rises and dive deep.

You are reading our free mid-month email.  June 12, 2023

Paid subscribers receive 10 monthly 16-page ad-free newsletters covering subjects traditional publications avoid for fear of upsetting their advertisers. But we don't accept advertising. We are accountable only to divers. Our travel reviews are written by undercover authors who pay their way. Our stories cover equipment problems, liveaboard safety, the ins and outs of tipping, how dive insurance can fail you, and much, much more. In December, you will receive the Travelin' Diver's Chapbook, filled with hundreds of travel reviews by fellow subscribers. Not only that, you have full access to more than 11,000 Undercurrent independent readers' reports -- opinions and impressions posted without fear or favor by those who have stayed at the resorts or have been on liveaboards worldwide. I am offering you a seven-month trial subscription for just $19.95. And I'll send you a FREE download of the 40-page e-books Eight Great Liveaboards (and One Disaster) and Eight Great Dive Resorts (and One Dog). If you want your money back at any time during this period, you'll get it, a promise I've kept since we started publishing in 1975. Click Here.

Do You Work at a Dive Center or on a Liveaboard? Have you ever declined a customer because they were too old to dive?  June 12, 2023

An Undercurrent subscriber wrote that she and her husband are 77 years old and have 150 dives, haven't been diving in a couple of years, and have heard that some dive operations won't take people of a certain age, even if they pay extra to have their own dive master. What's your policy regarding age? We'd like to hear about it. Write to BenDDavison@undercurrent.org, not forgetting to mention your operation's name. And, if you're a diver who has been refused, let's hear from you.

Need to Renew Your Passport Fast?   June 12, 2023

If your passport expires in less than six months and you're about to travel, you may be refused entry to another country. It takes the U.S. State Department 10-13 weeks to renew a passport, but I needed mine faster, so I used the Fed Ex Expedited Passport Service and got it back pronto. In addition to the government's $130 renewal fee, expedited service starts at $189 for 7-9 weeks and up to $899 for a one-week turnaround. See here for details.

Sea Flower ran aground on a reef
Photo: Nick Bailey

Egyptian Day Boat Runs Aground.  June 12, 2023

It's not been a good few weeks for Egyptian dive boats after the loss of Carlton Queen. On May 17, Sea Flower, a dayboat out of Sharm el Sheikh, ran aground on a reef en route to the WW2 wreck of the Thistlegorm. Divers on board were from Camel Divers in Na'ama Bay. The vessel was left high and dry, and another dive boat took the passengers and crew off.

Fancy Your Own Liveaboard?   June 12, 2023

The French Polynesia Master is up for sale. It has cabins for 25 passengers, 5 staff cabins, a spacious interior, state-of-the-art navigation equipment, and an impressive dive deck. It's for sale by auction. For more information, email adrian@marineauctions.com.au And, in the July issue of Undercurrent, we'll have more information on resorts and liveaboards for sale. While you may not be in the market, it's a kick to window-shop.

Great Shark Snapshot Needs You.   June 12, 2023

If you're diving anywhere between July 22-30, by recording any sharks, rays, or skates you see, you can help the Shark Trust's citizen-science project, the Great Shark Snapshot initiative. The data you provide, or the photos or videos of sharks and rays you take, will be added to its Shark Log, a global census to help scientists build a picture of species distribution and detect any changes from destructive fishing, climate change, and habitat loss. Divers from more than 20 countries are involved. Sign up here.

Shark Attacks.   June 12, 2023

A 28-year-old Connecticut woman snorkeling in Turks & Caicos off Providenciales' Blue Haven Resort lost a foot in a shark attack on May 24. Big Blue Collective, a Provo water sports company, said, "The calm, quick, and measured response from one of our captains and office team meant that the victim was extracted from the ocean and dispatched in the ambulance in 15 minutes." It said the attack is "what is known in diving circles as a case of mistaken identity." Meanwhile, on June 8, in Hurghada, Egypt, a Russian tourist swimming off a crowded beach, was killed by a tiger shark in front of horrified holidaymakers.

Little Cayman’s Pirates Point is for sale for US$7.5 million.   June 12, 2023

The delightful Gladys Howard, a superb chef, took it over in the 1980s, and it quickly became a favorite with divers and Undercurrent. Gladys passed in 2015, and her daughter Susan began running it. Since then, long-time staff members Gay, Ed, and Diane have retired, and Susan, wanting to spend more time with her family, has decided to part with the exceptional little resort. She says she isn’t “going to sell it to just anybody.” Email her at info@piratespointresort.com.

Carlton Queen – the Capsizing.   June 12, 2023

We record the experiences of some of its occupants when their lives suddenly turned upside down as their liveaboard turned over and trapped them in the sinking vessel. You can read the Special Report in the Internet edition of Undercurrent.

What You Missed in the Last Undercurrent.   June 12, 2023

Diving inexpensively in Curaçao . . . An aquarium not for animal lovers . . . SCTLD closes Bonaire dive sites . . . Cage diving with great whites in Nova Scotia . . . When explorers don’t find what they’re looking for . . . Too many divers at Molokini? . . . Insurance Issues for Caribbean operators . . . Are you safe on a liveaboard? . . . Two liveaboards capsize with some loss of life . . . A new dive site is garbage! . . . A unique but serious injury in Belize . . . How special is a PADI 5-star resort? . . . Full-face snorkeling masks implicated again . . . Dreaming of diving Petit Mustique . . . and much, much more.

You are reading our free mid-month email.   June 12, 2023

Paid subscribers receive 10 monthly 16-page ad-free newsletters covering subjects traditional publications avoid for fear of upsetting their advertisers. But we don't accept advertising. We are accountable only to divers. Our travel reviews are written by undercover authors who pay their way. Our stories cover equipment problems, liveaboard safety, the ins and outs of tipping, how dive insurance can fail you, and much, much more. In December, you will receive the Travelin' Diver's Chapbook, filled with hundreds of travel reviews by fellow subscribers. Not only that, you have full access to more than 11,000 Undercurrent independent readers' reports -- opinions and impressions posted without fear or favor by those who have stayed at the resorts or have been on liveaboards worldwide. I am offering you a seven-month trial subscription for just $19.95. And I'll send you a FREE download of the 40-page e-books Eight Great Liveaboards (and One Disaster) and Eight Great Dive Resorts (and One Dog). If you want your money back at any time during this period, you'll get it, a promise I've kept since we started publishing in 1975. Click Here.

Ben Davison, editor/publisher
BenDDavison@undercurrent.org

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Note: Undercurrent is a registered 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization donating funds to help preserve coral reefs. Our travel writers never announce their purpose, are unknown to the destination, and receive no complimentary services or compensation from the dive operators or resort.

Highlights of Previous Online Updates*

Here are past Online Update emails sent out . You can sign-up for free to receive these in the future here.

 

20 May, 2024

23 April, 2024

16 March, 2024

16 February, 2024

15 January, 2024

16 December, 2023

28 November, 2023

25 October, 2023

26 September, 2023

18 August, 2023

20 July, 2023

12 June, 2023

27 May, 2023

22 April, 2023

21 March, 2023

21 February, 2023

22 January, 2023

17 December, 2022

26 November, 2022

19 October, 2022

23 September, 2022

15 August, 2022

21 July, 2022

21 June, 2022

16 May, 2022

29 April, 2022

30 March, 2022

25 February, 2022

24 January, 2022

 

3 December, 2021

27 October, 2021

21 September, 2021

August 18, 2021

28 July, 2021

12 June, 2021

21 May, 2021

26 April, 2021

11 April, 2021

27 March, 2021

12 March, 2021

28 February, 2021

9 February, 2021

31 January, 2021

20 January, 2021

5 January, 2021

20 December, 2020

1 December, 2020

15 November, 2020

1 November, 2020

13 October, 2020

1 October, 2020

21 September, 2020

9 September, 2020

21 August, 2020

8 August, 2020

18 July, 2020

8 July, 2020

25 June, 2020

9 June, 2020

May, 2020

April, 2020

March, 2020

February, 2020

January, 2020

Online Updates* Archive, 2000-2019

* Sometimes referred to as Upwellings


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