I would like to share an incident last Sunday on Missing Diver. I was doing Peak Performance Buoyancy Dive with my 3 Advanced Open Water Diver students. Upon descent at Renggis Island – Pulau Tioman, a turtle was sighted, there was another group of 8-10 divers surrounding the turtle. So we waited for our turn to get closer to the turtle for a closer view.
The group of divers left and we have a close view of the turtle having his meal. He didn’t even bother about the divers surrounding him. We continue on for our dive, upon reaching the sandy bottom and coral, I carried out my head count. I have 3 Advanced Open Water Diver students and 1 leisure diver, including me will be 5 of us.
To my surprise, I have counted 6 divers including, it’s not 7th Lunar Month yet. Bloody hell, he was scrimping around me when I did the head count. I asked him if he was OK, he replied OK. I looked at his confused face, he was like not sure but still scrimping around to gain his buoyancy.
I took out my slate and wrote, I asked him, “R U LOST”.
He replied in signal, “I DUNNO”
I checked with him, “Which dive center is he from”
He wrote something “Free …..”
I signal to him to ascent, next moment I knew, he inflated his BCD and shoot up. It was too late to catch him, he went up very fast, I wasn’t able to react.
I hope he is fine, as I never heard and incident and accident report.
MISSING DIVER PROCEDURE
1. Search for your buddy for not more than a minute.
2. Safety Stop if required before Ascent to surface.
3. Reunite on surface.
Always stay close to your buddy, make a frequent check every once a while if he/she is still around. Do not panic when you discover you are lost or your buddy is lost.