CDNN :: Divers stranded after UAE dive boat left them behind
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by LUTHER MONROE - CDNN Dive Safety News Editor
FUJAIRAH, UAE (24 June 2007) -- A group of divers on a scuba expedition in Dibba, Fujairah, were left reeling yesterday after surfacing from a 30-metre wreck-dive to discover their boat had left without them.
In 1998, Tom and Eileen Lonergan died while scuba diving in Australia after a dive boat left them behind. The Dive Queensland marketing group responded to the tragedy by accusing the victims of committing suicide.
The four men had spent around 20 minutes underwater at the popular but strong surface-current area Inchcape 1 yesterday morning, where Inchcape Shipping sunk a boat in 2001 to create a dive site.
But when they resurfaced they discovered The Palm Dive Centre's boat had gone, leaving them and their dive master stranded in the open waters.
One of the divers, James Evan Sumagaysay, 30, told reporters: "We were waiting for around 20 minutes in the water but there was no sign of our boat. You can't just leave a diver floating in the water for that long, especially not when they are on a drop that big and in a strong surface-current area. It's dangerous. Anything could have happened"...