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Diving Safety, Accidents and Incidents Post here to discuss accidents, incidents, ideas, gear, or anything else to improve spearfishing safety. Memorials and condolences threads should be placed in that separate forum.

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Old 05-11-2008, 07:30 PM   #46
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

You guys are harcore for sure. I keep going back to the top of the story expecting to read "back in 1970 something" we did this, but I am shocked when I see "last week" we did this.
Somehow you guys continue to come home from these adventures. Please keep the stories coming and dive safe.
I guess I should say safe as possible when the dive plan is:
220ft. on air with no hard bottom and countless hazards.
Goal: shoot really big fish
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Old 05-11-2008, 07:44 PM   #47
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twin-or-Lose View Post
You guys are harcore for sure. I keep going back to the top of the story expecting to read "back in 1970 something" we did this, but I am shocked when I see "last week" we did this.
Somehow you guys continue to come home from these adventures. Please keep the stories coming and dive safe.
I guess I should say safe as possible when the dive plan is:
220ft. on air with no hard bottom and countless hazards.
Goal: shoot really big fish
I think we have to acknowledge that what these guys are describing is outside of any training agency guidance. Clearly they are willing to compromise safety for big fish.

I have to believe that it takes a bunch of experience (or a uniquely talented person) to somehow figure out how to repeatedly get away with some of the dives they describe.

Also, there are many people who will be so blasted at 220 feet (on air) from narcosis that they will NEVER be able to function reliably at those depths.

Just because THEY seem to be able to do it doesn't mean that WE can.
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Old 05-11-2008, 07:50 PM   #48
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAfreediver View Post
There are going to be a record number of freedivers this year at the helldivers rodeo.
I dont think there will be as many as last year. I know GR probably wont make it, I'll be in KW, alot of the LB crew have had things pop up. The stars just havent lined up. Alot of the guys we bring in from Cali, Florida, Oregon and so on just cant do it this time. Sucks but guess we all gotta pay that mortgage. First time in many years this hasnt been one of the most anticipated event for alot of us.
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Old 05-11-2008, 08:38 PM   #49
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Quote:
Originally Posted by jfjf View Post
I think we have to acknowledge that what these guys are describing is outside of any training agency guidance. Clearly they are willing to compromise safety for big fish.

I have to believe that it takes a bunch of experience (or a uniquely talented person) to somehow figure out how to repeatedly get away with some of the dives they describe.

Also, there are many people who will be so blasted at 220 feet (on air) from narcosis that they will NEVER be able to function reliably at those depths.

Just because THEY seem to be able to do it doesn't mean that WE can.
JF, it's happened before and this is what this post is about, we do this stuff all the time and yep, it does catch up with us. This thread is to warn the newcomers, I'm just trying to save a life here this summer.

Rigdvr,

Sorry you guys can't make it this year.

Howabout another story or 2?
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Old 05-11-2008, 09:01 PM   #50
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Nothing life threatening but Louis' story of the Portuguese man o war in his shorts reminded me of a story of my own, it may save someone some discomfort.

I was in the Bahamas and diving often so I'd just turn the wetsuit inside out and throw it on the floor inside the house to dry. One day before diving I put my hand inside one of the sleeves to start turning the suit right side out. As I did so a huge one of these fell out.



I didn't know Centipedes were common on the island and that they preferred humid dark places, just like a wet wetsuit. I consider myself lucky that I didn't get bit as I was told later the bite is poisonous and very painful, in case of allergies or small children can lead to death.
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Old 05-11-2008, 09:06 PM   #51
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

You know some days, you're just swimming death, everytime you aim the gun at something it just rolls over. Last years HDR, I was in a Funk. Everything I shot lived to kick my ass.

First dive, I shoot a 70lb. AJ. Easy shot should have really hurt him but if not easy to deal with, right? No! I happened to be on the totally far side of the rig as everyone else and only 160' deep. The others were at 220' with their own AJ's and with Fishkilla videoing.

So I know I'm by myself, my fish that I was going to let beat on the pipe till he wears himself out found a piece of cable ro wrap around about a 100x's. When they do this, as fast as you can unwrap them they wrap up more. They always seem to have enough energy to keep messing shit up.

I get myself into this situation where I can either leave the fish, tie him off and make a second dive to get the fish up, which will slow the dive trip for everyone, or committ to getting this fish up on the first dive. I chose the latter. Last time I checked my air guage during this fight, (because I checked it maybe 25x's) it looked like I still had 1000 lbs.

You ever catch yourself looking at your air guage, then after you do, you don't know what your reading was? You just look but it doesn't register in your brain.

Anyway, I finally, after stabbing the fish in the head and letting go of everything but the fish get him off the pipe. And the second I start swimming up the regulator tightens.

My buddies know how we dive and this is the ability we do have. I YELL at Wil underwater, oh yeah, Hell Divers talk underwater! Papa Smurf taught me, I'm teaching everyone else. If you dive with me and you hear me yell, you look directly at me, this is the instructions I give to everyone.

So I yell at Wil who is going up also and about 40' away from me, I do the hand across my throat and he hands me his octopus. I will always grab it in that sitation even though I can make the surface because now I will still have enough air in my tank to decompress, should he have to leave me at 20'.

Funk or not, we all depend on each other, we have a crew that always watches out for each other. We have 4 regulars in this crew with some interchangeables. When we push the limits, break the laws of gas or whatever, we have each other that we can depend on.

For the new guy, that comes to dive the rigs first time, he will lose his buddy instantly and be in an absolutely new situation. If stuff happens he will be screwed.

I truly believe an Amberjacks soul goal in life is once he is shot, is to kill the diver. Back in the day, it was like they dared us to shoot them, I mean big ones. These fish know when you are losing the fight, they get more agressive when that happens. You have to command respect from these fish or they will Kill You!

Hope this helps. I just thought of 4 more stories.
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Last edited by Louis Rossignol; 05-11-2008 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 05-11-2008, 09:37 PM   #52
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Wil's Post,

Wil is a dear friend and he tries to watch everyone, he's a cop, protect and serve, as we all try to watch each other. I had gotten caught up with a big fish I had seen and was out of the loop with the goings on. This is what happens at the rigs.

Unlike diving a reef, where everyone is on the bottom at the same depth, we have divers scattered at all kinds of depths and across a verticle structure thats several hudred feet across without the visiability to see across the entire structure at times.

The true buddy system, doesn't work. Not in competitive spearfishing. When you shoot a fish, how in the hell are you going to watch someone else?

When Wil got on the boat and said to me, "he didn't feel good". Theres only one response you will ever get out of me, unless you become unconscience. "Back in the water", "60ft. crawl up the pipe and stop at 30', 20' and then 10'.

There are times when you have to be decisive, act, don't talk.


O2 only postpones the bends, in water decompression stops them. Wil wasn't going to be bent, but O2 also wouldn't get rid of trapped gas, in water decompression did.
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Old 05-13-2008, 07:23 PM   #53
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

More. We want to hear more.
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Old 05-13-2008, 07:26 PM   #54
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

in the 'you know your a rig diver...' thread someone said "in the rig is safe" idk wtf that means??? can someone enlighten the rest of us?

i agree more rig stories!!!
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:17 PM   #55
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

That means if you burn a fattie, it's all good.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:27 PM   #56
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Quote:
Originally Posted by fishkiller420 View Post
in the 'you know your a rig diver...' thread someone said "in the rig is safe" idk wtf that means??? can someone enlighten the rest of us?

i agree more rig stories!!!
I thought I was wearing yall out. Don't want to bore anybody.

In the rig can be safe, safe from the current and safe from whatever swims outside of the rigs. If your at a rig in 300-400' of water or deeper, anything is out there. My buddy Whip was coming up outside the rig with a 50 lb. AJ in his hands and along comes about an 800 lb. Tiger. Not good.

I've had a roving gang of Bulls that were all about 300 lbs. a piece come at me. I saw them outside the rig at 220' didn't know what they were so I thought I'd get a closer look, they saw me and changed course straight for me.

But generally you don't have that much to worry about outside the rigs, it just feels safer.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:41 PM   #57
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

Gear

When you rig dive you want to keep the minimal amount of gear and you want to keep it tight. Agressive fights with fish can get your gear hung up, as ws the case with one of the divers in another club.

He shot a fish that pulled him and his pressure guage got hung up and the hose busted, if that happens you have about 10 seconds to get to the surface before running out of air. I purposely strap my weight belt around my pressure guage to prevent this from happening. Anyway the diver did live to tell about it.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:46 PM   #58
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

I read a little about Whip in the book, but it didn't go into detail about the situation.

Rok, tell us what happened. I think a lot of people might benefit from it. If you don't think so, I understand.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:46 PM   #59
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die


Another Horror Story

Before I came on the scene there was a diver, Randy Jackson, Papa Smurf told me about him. He was a very strong diver and shot alot of nice fish. They were diving GI 95 on this day and Randy was diving along side with his girlfriend. Everyone except Randy and his girlfriend went for the bottom, 225'. On the way up they saw him and his girlfriend hanging on an outside leg of the rig. He gave them the OK signal and no one ever saw either of them again.

The parents of both individuals paid commercial divers to dive for him and they never did find the body. What happened?

Those 3 rigs, which is what they have are located just south of the Grande Isle Trench. You head out and cross over deeper water before you get to them. Big warsaw groupers used to frequent these 3 rigs in the past. Some in excess of 200 lbs. were killed back in the day. We can only speculate as to what happened, a big fish, a panic with one of the divers a shark? No one will ever know.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:57 PM   #60
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Re: 100 Ways for a Rig Diver to Die

And Another Horror Story

This one hits a little closer to home and as you read you will see why.

Stan and Rafe were out at WD 117 when they heard the SOS on the radio. They were shooting some real nice gag groupers that day on a nearby rig. When they heard the call they wet to the rig where the dive boat was with 2 other divers in total panic.

Their friend did not come up.

Rafe and Stan suited up to try to search the bottom of a 220' rig. They jumped in without spearguns and when they got to the bottom they said the rig was loaded with 70+ lb. gags. And also lots of cable and other things to get hung up on. They never did find the guy.

You know we had a Hell Diver meeting in my garage and this lady drives up with her 3 kids in the Suburban and she asks if we are the Hell Divers. Me and Stan walk up to the truck and she tell us that her husband was the one that didn't come up that day and how she appreciated the 2 Hell Divers that tried to find her husband that day. She says she still has no closeure with the fact that her husband is dead because the body was never found. She lives down the block from my house, I'll never forget the little kids in her vehicle, the oldest couldn't have been anymore that 5 years old. All they wanted to know was where their daddy had gone.

I've heard at least 3 different reports of divers washing up on Mississippi beaches still wrapped up with a big grouper. Is this what happened? Who knows.
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