Thursday, 10 January 2008

Second Death for Cayman Islands. Shore diver gone missing.

hore Diver lost near Turtle Farm

My two sons learned to dive off Cracked Conch a few years. It is a safe, fun and enjoyable dive site. By my tally this is the second diver death on Cayman this year. This gentleman was 64, last week's was 49. Used to be that most fatalities were young newcomers to the sport, nowadays, it isn't that way at all.

Diver missing off Grand Cayman

Wednesday 30th January, 2008 Posted: 15:33 CIT (20:33 GMT) - Cayman Compass Newspaper

A search for a missing scuba diver continued Wednesday morning after he failed to make it back to shore on Tuesday afternoon.

The 64–year–old man went out for a shore dive off Cracked Conch in West Bay.

At around 3pm, staff from Sun Divers notified police that the man had failed to return. The man, who is an American citizen, has been a regular visitor to Cayman over the past 15 years and was staying at Morritts Tortuga, where he owned a time share.

When he went out for the dive, he left the shoreline with five other people and, according to members of his group, he was experiencing buoyancy problems and indicated that he was returning to the shore. They told officers that they then saw the man surface and begin swimming back toward the coast, but when they returned he had not made it back.

A sea, air and land search was immediately launched by the Royal Cayman Islands Police and several other agencies joined the search, including the Department of Environment, Port Authority, and a number of local boats, including Cayman Aggressor. The helicopter was also brought in to assist, but the man was not located.

The search was called off after the sun went down and commenced again at first light on Wednesday, but as of 10am, he had still not been found.

Ronnie Dougal of the Department of Environment said “the water conditions were pretty good off Cracked Conch that day and there appeared to be very little current. The missing man was a farmer and he had been informed he was in good physical health.”

Editor's Note: Since posting this article, the body of the 64-year old diver was recovered by Cayman officials.

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