Report about the dive tour with AQUANAUTS, Pattaya, on Tuesday, 23rd March 2009
We left Pattaya at about 8.30 in the morning.
Just before we arrived at the dive site, a shipwreck off the coast near Sattahip, our guide told us (my buddy Andy and me) that we should have brought gloves as there might be dangerous edges at the wreck. I was very annoyed, because he hadn’t told us that earlier. He was present at the shop in Pattaya, when we got our rental equipment from Aquanauts.
The ‘briefing’ for the first dive consisted of the information that there where strong currents, that we should go down slowly holding on to the line, and that we would not penetrate the wreck. A few minutes later he told us, that another guide would go down with us, but would leave us again after a while.
When we went down the line to a depth of about 25 metres I noticed that the currents where so strong that you couldn’t turn your head sideways and upwards without holding the mask, and it was nearly blown off my face when I tried to look up to my guide.
At the bottom, the currents weren’t so strong anymore and we swam towards the wreck. First thing when we arrived there, we penetrated and stayed inside the wreck for about 5 minutes. After leaving, the currents pushed me and Andy up beyond the upper rim of the wreck but I was able to go down again to the luffward side of the wreck. Andy was holding on to the rim of the wreck and our guide tried to help him get over to the luff side again. Without success. After some time I couldn’t see them anymore and decided to go up.
Back on the boat I saw both of them again. Andy was taken care of by our guide and a female dive guide from Aquanauts. He had severe cuts on his hands and legs. He later told me he had had run out of air, had lost his mask and a fin and had come up in an emergency ascent together with our guide. He had swallowed a lot of water and had nearly drowned.
I asked him, why he hadn’t used the Octopus of our guide and he told me that he couldn’t grab it, because he was unable to see without the mask.
Why did our guide not give him his second regulator?
I’m not that experienced but shouldn’t a diver be immediately taken to a deko-chamber after an emergency ascent from 20 metres? Or at least to a hospital?
A female guide told us that we would return home as soon as another group of divers would be on board again. This group had gone to dive only AFTER Andy had come on board!!
All the divers (including me) that had been down at the wreck and who were entitled to a second dive in the afternoon, agreed to return to Pattaya as soon as possible so that Andy could get hospital care. We finally came back to the Aquanaut office at about 3 o’clock pm and Andy reached the hospital at about 4 o’clock!!
To sum up, I think a) we shouldn’t have gone down to the wreck in the first place
b) the briefing was deficient
c) the dive guide was not experienced enough for these
d) the medical treatment after the incident was not sufficient