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Have heard about the incident breifly,57y/o man from Oldham failed to re-surface when diving with a group of friends,as of now(Mon.18th morning)the search continues for him.I have no further details,may our thoughts be with him and his family/friends.
<a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/2486781.stm

(Edited" target="_blank">http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/2486781.stm

(Edited</a> by Hobby at 11:21 am on Nov. 18, 2002)


(Edited by Hobby at 11:24 am on Nov. 18, 2002)
 

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Here's that BBC story in full for anyone having difficulty with the URL. Story posted on the BBC website at 18.41 GMT, Sunday, 17th November 2002.


Police plan to recover diver's body


Dorothea quarry has been the scene of many fatalities

Police sub-aqua officers are planning to use specialist equipment to recover the body of a diver who died at a disused north Wales quarry.

They called off their search at the notoriously dangerous Dorothea Quarry in the Nantlle Valley, Gwynedd, as light faded on Sunday.

The man - aged 57 and from Oldham in Greater Manchester - failed to resurface when diving with a friend, and the alarm was raised at 1130 GMT.


The quarry is popular with diving enthusiasts


The 300ft-deep quarry has been dubbed "death quarry" by locals, who have seen 20 deaths over the past 10 years.

It is considered to be one of the best freshwater diving sites in the UK.

Earlier this year, its owner urged enthusiasts to stay away after the death of Paul Amison, 32, from Staffordshire.

Asked to leave

Glyn Small said he had made repeated efforts to prevent thrill-seekers using the area, but all his attempts to block access had been ignored.

Just days after the death in February, he had to ask a group of divers from Cambridgeshire who were at the quarry to leave.

He said the roads into the quarry had been closed off with 30 tonne boulders and huge trenches, but groups had still managed to get into the site.

"I hope the people who are doing this have a conscience because these deaths need not have happened," he said.

Safety measures

Mr Small has talked of plans to create a proper scuba-diving centre at the quarry, but any such development would be manned by qualified staff and will have safety resources including a rescue boat, a helipad and a portable hyperbaric chamber.

At the time of the last tragedy, Hywel Williams, the Plaid Cymru MP for Caernarfon, renewed his plea for divers to stay away from the quarry until safety measures were in place.

"I recognise people's rights to take risks as long as those risks are well thought through and there are adequate safety measures," said Mr Williams.

"I think the danger here is people may be venturing beyond their capacities without quite realising what they are doing."
 

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Hmmm.. there was a distinct lack of 30tonne boulders blocking anything a couple of weeks ago.  Maybe they all fell into those 'huge trenches' and so hid them too!
 

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I am sure I echo the thoughts of everyone when I say my thoughts are with the family.  The death of a fellow diver is never a good thing.

Without wishing to be insensitive however I would be interested in finding out what *is* the situation with access to Dotty.

Presumably it is privately owned and therefore the owners have the word on whether or not divers are welcome.  However that message seems to be confused.  Ont he one hand there is Glyn Small and the reps from all the agencies telling people that diving is not to be done at Dotty and all efforts are in place to prevent access, and on the other hand there is anecdotal evidence that the same Mr Small has personally welcomed divers there and that there are no barriers to entry.

What is going on?
 

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Spooky or what??

The guy who died is a regular in the Dive Team of one of my neighbours (Dave - he lives three doors down from me!). I'm gonna go round tonight and offer him our condolences and that of the wider diving community as a whole. I'll see if I can get any more details on precisely what happened. I do know that he was supposed to be on the same trip and for some reason didn't go at the last minute.

He then went over to Dotty the moment he heard to offer his services in any recovery attempt and they declined this and he was politely told that it was now a Police and HSE matter.

Thing is, these boys are all Trimix wallahs, deep, wreck, caves - the lot?! Not that that counts for much to anyone when the 'black hand' is placed up on you. More when I have it.
 

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OK, just got back from Dave's house and here's the gravy - and it makes for sorry reading......

Dennis - the still missing (now corectly presumed dead) diver, 57, was last seen by his family on Saturday, before setting out to dive with his usual dive team at Dotty.

He was diving open-circuit and reached 105 metres; his buddy was on an Inspiration and did 97 metres. He'd put in a couple of pile-stops and reached the 40 metre mark on the shot on ascent.

There are now two theories (sets of speculation) under consideration: one, he had a heart attack; two, he switched to his travelling gas (80% mix) at the above depth. He was seen to being having what was described by his Inspiration buddy as a 'thromby' - spasms/fits in other words.

His buddy could not redress him after trying and he slipped back down out of sight to the quarry floor - or so they believe - they maintain that they know "exactly where he is".

Now here's the sorry bit.....

Dave (my neighbour) was due to go on the dive with his usual team - but for some reason 'called' the dive as he didn't feel right - "had a funny feeling". No shame, none of us need to explain why we don't want to dive on a given day.

He was informed of events by phone later on the Sunday, the day of the incident and, after contacting the rest of the team, promised to go down to Dotty on the Monday morning for 07.00 hrs to offer their services in the 'recovery'.

They had been told that this time in the morning would be the time that the police diver teams would be there to begin the search with an ROV. One police rep turned up at 10.00 hrs to inform them that no one would be there that day as they could not get access to the ROV until today (Tuesday). So they agreed to return this morning to see if they could offer help in the search.

So, they returned this morning and watched as they were  told that their services could not be used - even though they had all the correct kit and mixes - as it was now a 'site of investigation for the police and the HSE'; albeit the police diving units can, by HSE ruling, only dive to a max of 50 metres.

What followed was partially pathetic (in a 'sorry, there's nothing else we can do' type way) and partially farce.

The ROV the police/HSE had managed to acquire (from the Customs & Excise) went in and started its up and down (rather like a roller-coater!!) sweep/search movement?! I'm no expert in recovery, but I think keeping to a given depth and enacting either a snaking or 'zig-zag' lateral sweep/search pattern might have been more the ticket, like I say, I could be wrong.

In any event, the lights of the ROV could be seen constantly and clearly at the surface (Dotty goes down to approx 110 metres!!)

It was then discovered that the ROV did not have the required length of cable on it to reach the required search depth......neither did it have a compass......and then they said it needed side-mounted RADAR??!

Now I've never dived Dotty, but from what I can gather from Dave that has, many times, is that it is wide at the brim and almost conical as it tapers to the sump, begging the question: why on earth might they need the side-mounted RADAR??

After a quick 'drains-up', it was decided to call off the search and send up to Fort Bill (Stenmar Group) for an all-singing-all-dancing ROV that was man enough for the job and could carry the correct length of cable and have a cat in ####'s chance of finding Dennis's body.

It later transpired that the Customs & Excise ROV was used for checking the keels and hulls of suspect yatchs and boats in port/harbour for concealed drugs.......and like ANY ship or boat is gonna have a draft of 110 metres?? No marine vessel has ever been built with such a specification!

So, the Fort Bill ROV arrives (God willing) on Thursday. The family have been at Dotty each day since Sunday and we can only imagine what they are going through.

Dave's dive team feel useless, because whilst they have all the kit and experience to conduct the search, the police and the HSE are not prepared to admitt that they are so bound by bullshit rules and too ill-equipt to allow anyone else but themselves to take the job on. And all this while Dennis is still down there.

I've passed on all our condolences and prayers to Dave and asked that he, in turn, pass them on to Dennis's family, relatives and friends.

The heart attack theory is gaining credence between his immediate dive mates - Dennis had two brothers that both died from a congenital heart disorder and he was trying everything in his power to beat the curse - great diet, none-smoker, did half-marathons, the works. He was renowned as a "meticulous" diver and switching to the wrong mix on his ascent - whilst possible - is not thought likely.

That's all I have for now folks. Like I say, makes for a sorry catalogue of 'what could/should have been', but there we go.

Dive safe always.
 

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Bren
Whilst I can understand (and sympatise) with your feelings about the 'bullshit' rules which bind the Police and HSE, and there are many. How would you or anyone else feel, if one of the 'volenteer rescue team' were to be injured or even worse die as a result of an "invitation" by the authorities to assist in the search and recovery of the body?
I agree that to members of the public the authorities can appear heartless they are not. One body does not under any circumstances warrant another life
 

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Hey Andy,

Sorry mate, you've mistaken the direction of my ire - not at the services at all.

I tried, with others (Hobby et al), for over a year to get  a 'civilian inland water resuce team' off the ground and am only too aware of the brick walls that are faced when trying to get the powers that be to change their thinking in any given areas. Not funny and very time consuming.

I also whole-heartedly agree that one body should not become two. I guess I was railing at the hopelessness of the situation, not the services and the srictures under which hey have to work and act. They do a great job with the rather pathetic resources made available to them.
 

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That is grim reading , Bren.  Although it does Dennis neither good nor harm the family must be going through ####.  

Fingers crossed that they find a definitive cause of death, and I guess for the family, that it is a heart attack.  At least then it couldn't have been prevented any more than he tried to.
 

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Hi Bren,
thanks for the insight, I can only echo the sentiments already expressed and hope that the recovery of Dennis is completed quickly for his family and friends sake.

Safe diving,
Steve.
 

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One of the reports from the Inspiration User's Forum:
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A little bit more on the incident at Dorry, the words of a man who was
there, the fatality was NOT an Inspiration diver, but interesting comments
regarding the technologies, please remember this is hearsay and someone died
in the incident, the BBC reported that the fatality was at "100m using a
"mixed gas" diving unit, which lets divers reach greater depths than
conventional diving equipment":

I am able to confirm that the fatality at dory was using open circuit twin
set and side slungs but was budied with an inspiration diver.
He (the OC diver)was using a heliair mix  10/52 ( seems about ok for the
depth) and was
actually on the ascent  returning back up the line having completed the dive
.The inspiration diver was ahead of him on the line and was passed rapidly
by the oc guy in a cloud of bubbles at 40m. The inspiration diver had full
oc bail out from what I was told and could not catch him and missed all his
stops upto 20m in an attempt to follow . At 20m he started and eventually
cut short his deco to the surface .He continued on 02 on the surface and
showed no signs of dci  3 hours later.  He did not see his buddy again.
Easy with hind site but perhaps to much separation between the two in view
of the different Technologies.
The guy that is missing was a regular oc diver at dorry.

Regards

Stephen Bird
----------------------------------------------------------
 

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If the guy on the inspiration was ahead of him on the line does this mean the OC diver was on the way up when he passed him in a cloud of bubbles, I'm confused as I thought he'd sank from the deco stop

Excuse my stupidity
 

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Sorry Davey,

Probably the way I described it - poorly - in my original piece. As I understand it, the buddy on the Inspiration was below your man on the OC kit (who was at 40 metres on the shot), when things went wrong. The CCR buddy couldn't stop your man from his rapid descent and we know the rest.
 

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Bren, I think what is confusing Davey is the same thing that is confusing me.  The RB guy (in Ammer's post) was going *up* to try to catch Dennis.  He missed stops to ascend from 40m to 20m...

You say he was going down (which makes more sense if they say they know where he is)?
 

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I would just like to inform anyone that Dennis was recovered from Dorothea last night. A ROV from t William was brought down on Thursday and this managed to locate and recover him.
 

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Grim though that is, I am relieved for the poor man's family that he wasnt lost for ever. Bren I'm sure you have already passed on ALL our condolences, regardless of wether he should or should not have been doing that dive he paid the ultimate price.
Matt
 

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Hey Brian,

Much thanks from the team at YD for the heads-up on Dennis.

Thank God he's now been recovered and back in the bosom of his family - maybe now they can begin the mourning process properly. May he Rest In Peace.
 

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Amen to that Bren.

I think it might be pertinent to desist from some of the conjecture on the "other place" about this incident and just "leave it" for a decent period of time.

Be safe everybody.
 

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I know we followed this thread with a certain sense of 'there but the grace of God go I...', but I'll be speaking to Dave (my neighbour) this week again and get an update to see if any more light can be shed on events.

Once again, our deepest and heart-felt condolences to Dennis's family and friends from all at YD.
 
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