A 23 year old woman died while on her first Scuba dive in the Whitsunday Islands in Australia. The reports says:
“She failed to resurface during the introductory "resort" scuba dive.
Frantic fellow divers tried in vain to resuscitate the young tourist after pulling her body from the water. Sergeant Graeme Pettigrew of Whitsundays Water Police said initial investigations suggested Ms Morrow had become separated from the group while diving and failed to resurface with the other divers. "The person involved was on a resort introductory dive. She was not an experienced diver," he said. "She became lost from the group."
How can a ‘resort introductory dive’ be conducted in open water? I did mine in a pool after a training course.
You just don’t let a new diver near open water until they have had quite a bit of training – because the first thing any new diver does under water when anything at all happens is panic.
And if it was in open water you would not leave their side – literally. There should have been a Dive Master next to that diver during every second of that dive – simply because so many things can go wrong so quickly.
Usually what a new diver will do is knock their regulator out of their mouth. This will immediate swing round behind them and - for a new diver - will take some finding.
What they should do is grab their octopus – or someone else’s octopus – and breath from that while they find their regulator.
What a person on their first dive would do is panic and without help they will probably drown.
Which is crazy because the surface is not more than 10 seconds and a couple of kicks away but if you are on your first dive you know nothing and without help you panic and die.
What a shambles. Leaving a diver alone on her first dive.
The young woman's name was Elaine Morrow. She was Irish and was on a working holiday. This has made me so gloomy I have put a gloomy picture up for her.