Sunday, July 24, 2005

Undercurrent Online Update

We thought that you might be interested in this online update from Undercurrent. If you are not a member of this no-profit organization - then you should certainly investigate joining.



Undercurrent -- Consumer Reporting for the
Scuba Diving Community since 1975

July 07, 2005


Deaths of three dive professionals shake the industry: Popular CocoView scuba guide, Tulio Gomez, died on June 22, while leading a dive trip at the Roatan, Honduras resort. A second diver, Texan Randy Gibbs, died during the same dive. There were no witnesses and the deaths are still being investigated. More information about the deaths and a fund established for Tulio's family can be found at . . . D.J. Pottorf, a 34-year-old crew member on the Nekton Rorquel in the Bahamas, died Monday June 21. He died while free diving off the boat at Orange Cay. . . . The body of a missing San Diego diver was found Monday afternoon, June 28. Steven Donathan, a 50-year-old San Diego scuba instructor, vanished on June 27 on a dive on the Yukon, a scuttled destroyer 100 feet below the surface. His body was discovered on the bottom level of the Yukon, the sixth level, a very difficult place to access.

Shadow Divers: Among the best of all diving nonfiction is Robert Kurson's Shadow Divers, a tale of two wreck divers who discover the hull of a German U-boat near New Jersey and trace the story behind it and those who died in it. Published last year, the book will be turned into a major film directed by Ridley Scott. If you haven't read this block buster, it's now available in paperback and can be purchased directly through Undercurrent, at Amazon's best prices. Click here and all of our profits on this and any other purchase you make will go directly to preserve coral reefs.

And Don't Forget No Safe Harbor: the tragic tale of the sinking of the Wave Dancer and 20 deaths in the 2001 Belize Hurricane. Also available at Undercurrent.

Fish Story: Bob Charles, a Florida Keys diver from Cudjoe Key, claims to have the bruises and four stitches in a lip following an attack by a 100-pound Goliath grouper last month. "It was just so fast," Charles told the Keynoter, a Florida Keys newspaper. "I didn't realize my head was in his mouth until I was on the way to the hospital, and I saw the blood." Charles, spearfishing for snapper in 30 feet of water, said the grouper had been following him. Charles' story reminded Bob Berger, owner of Bonefish Bob's tackle shop in Islamorada, of a true story 35 years ago, in the waters of Maine, when a monkfish killed a diver. "My son-in-law was giving diving lessons to four or five guys near the Nubble Light House off York," said Berger. "They were in 20 feet of water. All of a sudden a monkfish grabbed one diver by the throat and there was nothing the others could do. The fish killed the guy,"(Bill Sargent, June 26, Florida Today)

Less Fatigue With Nitrox? In the June issue of Undercurrent we report that researchers have found no measurable difference in fatigue, attention levels, or ability to concentrate in divers using either compressed air or Nitrox. They conducted a double blind, randomized controlled study using 11 divers who breathed either air or Nitrox 36% during an 18 m dry chamber dive for a bottom time of 40 minutes.

In the June issue of Undercurrent, subscribers read about:

Tobago, West Indies; Not Your Everyday Caribbean.
The Cypress Sea: Northern California Boat Diving
Aqua Lung's Mistral regulator; Our tests suggest a limited audience.
(Read the full report)
Nitrox Myths
Unfriendly Skies for Divers; Rules and restrictions for divers
No Safe Harbor: A new book on the Wave Dancer tragedy
Dive Computers: Part II; Five computers compared.
Scubapro MK20 Cracking Problem Reported.
Tougher to Get to Bonaire... Serious Injury at Sting Ray City (get the full story)... Diving Mimics Psychosis... Eating Napoleon wrasse in Australia... Divers underwater during earthquake... and much, much more.

Note: 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.

Coming in the July issue: Land based diving on Yap... and a little-advertised liveaboard on Palau... first hand report of the grounding of the T&C Aggressor... Bret Gilliam and Chris Newbert ask: Is digital imaging photography?... Why your first stage regulator may not be up to the task, and much much more.

Ben Davison, editor/publisher

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Offer Ends August 1!

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