09 December 2005

Saudi Arabia: Another scuba diver drowns in Red Sea

Members of the Jeddah scuba diving community are mourning the death of another young Saudi who drowned while scuba diving.

The death, the second in a month in Jeddah, occurred on Thursday at Al-Nakheel Beach, where the body of a 26-year-old man was found floating face down, with his air tank full and his diving equipment in working condition.

According to Al-Nakheel Beach's dive club manager, David Kirk, who was on the scene and aided in the rescue efforts, the dead diver had been certified in May this year and had from 30 to 40 dives logged to date.

"The man who passed away was diving with two others when somehow they got separated under the water. When his dive buddies realized he was missing, they surfaced and raised the alarm. A search and rescue operation was immediately mounted from the beach and from the water, and within minutes, the diver was found floating face down on the surface," Kirk told Arab News.

When the body was quickly brought back to shore, Kirk and a doctor on the scene began performing CPR on the victim, but could not resuscitate him despite trying for 25 minutes.

"When the diver was found, paramedics and the Coast Guard were notified, but nothing could be done to save the young man, who was subsequently pronounced dead by a doctor at the beach," Kirk said.

The young diver had visited Al-Nakheel Beach Thursday morning and rented some of his equipment from the dive shop at the beach after showing his diving certification card as proof of having been properly trained.

"When we recovered the diver, we found that he had plenty of air, and had not gone any deeper than 43 feet. No one knows exactly what happened to him under the water, but his equipment was in full working order," Kirk added.

The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of death.

On Eid day, 23-year-old Mufareh Abdullah Al-Ghamdi died while scuba diving with friends near Al-Rayes.

Source: www.arabnews.com


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