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Monday, July 9, 2012

4 corners diver death ABC tv

Many years ago I was employed as a diver on board a boat called the Kennedy off McKay in Queensland. The pay cuts were used even back then I was from Wollongong and had to travel at my expense. The price was reduced as we were leaving the dock. I arrived in Queensland with a weight of 11.5 stone and a month later I was 9.5 stone.  We worked up to sixteen hours a day seven days a week, I was working in up to 30 feet of water ascending every hour to load the Trocus shell on the boat. I got the bends and two weeks later was placed in a decompression chamber in the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney. On one occasion a tender boat never returned back to the Kennedy and was left in the open sea overnight. I was the only one who wanted to set up a search and rescue and was talked down. The tender returned in the early hours of the morning. Production was placed first over anything else.
When diving in Port Kembla at the multi purpose berth, The air bottle on my back for emergency was empty and I nearly drowned.
The diving industry needs to have a good look at themselves as more deaths will occur.  Dive master overseeing the jobs and the attendants need to be trained and on watch at all times a diver is in the water. On large scale operations like what was on four corners tonight should have a attendant for each diver and when the diver reached the surface the boat should have stopped. This not stopping the operation is a criminal act as all the divers would have realized something was wrong when the propeller of the ship stopped. This would have allowed all the divers to become rescue divers with the saving of a life. Drift diving is the boat moving with the current not being pulled at two kilometers an hour or more threw the water. This is not dangerous it is insane.

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