Lobster season has opened in southern California and already 5 people have died while lobster hunting. Why are people making such poor decisions when it comes to hunting for lobster, and ultimately willing to sacrifice their lives?
That sentence sounds extreme, but everyone who is trained in scuba knows that there are inherent risks involved. I acknowledge them, and then work to prevent them by being prepared and well trained. Anyone who puts scuba gear on without being fully prepared and fully trained in what they are planning on doing is taking a hugely increased risk.
How can lobster divers better prepare themselves?
1) Dive the sites they want to hunt during the day to get a good feel for the lay out. Duh. Why try to feel it out at night without having a feel for it during the day? See it in daylight.
2) Keep gear serviced and well maintained. For some reason, a lot of lobster divers cheap out on their life support equipment. But scuba equipment is just that: life support. Don’t put your life in the hands of equipment that hasn’t been maintained since you bought it.
3) Keep in shape. Dive healthy. Only dive while you’re not sick. Only dive when you’re physically fit. A lot of dive fatalities have been from heart attacks. Scuba puts you under pressure….literally. Your heart needs to be in the best possible shape at sea level to give you a fighting chance at depth.
4) don’t push your limits. When you are low on air, it’s time to come up. No excuses. When you lose your buddy, it’s time to come up and find them. When you get lost: it’s time to come up.
Ultimately, why risk your life for something that is sold at wholesale for $19.50/lb. Obviously not worth the ultimate cost of your life.
Stay safe SCUBA divers. As always, practice makes perfect. If you are not comfortable scuba diving without a task, then what makes you think you’d be comfortable scuba diving WITH a complex task like hunting for lobster?