Denna rapport från en sydafrikanska kommer ursprungligen från en tysk site. Efter att ha läst detta, kommer jag i fortsättningen att känna mig lite orolig när jag ser skepparen förtöja båten till revet vid dykning i Indiska Oceanen och Stilla Havet.
Von meiner Bekannten LIZ Gomez ( TL ) erhielt ich heute folgende Mail, die Ihre Erlebnisse während des Tsunami- Tauchgangs beschreiben:
Thanks for all your concern! When I sent out my seasons greetings email, it never crossed my mind that I would be writing to all of you again so soon!
Communications are all more or less back to normal. I received so many emails, and I'll try to reply individually, but here is a short version of what
happened to me when the tsunami hit the Maldives. It was one of the strangest experiences in my life - DIVING while the tsunami passed overhead.
We were supposed to go to another site further away that morning - 2hrs by boat - to check out some Mantas, but due to lack of enthusiasm (Italians like to sleep in and didn't want to get up at 7 to dive thank God! I decided to go to a shark point about 20 minutes away instead. The weather was absolutely beautiful as usual, but the sea was very rough and the decision was made not to tie down on the thila, like we usually do. Another lucky decision - because the sea is usually calm, the crew ties the rope as tightly as possible and doesn't leave any extra rope to allow for water movement/tide changes, like we do in SA. I had 4 experienced divers with me and we did a negative entry to avoid the top conditions. The visibility was not the best, about 20 metres. The currents were strong and I decided to stay close to the wall. We were about 25 minutes into the dive, when
everything changed. I was at about 20 m when I had to equalise like crazy, but I was staying at the same spot!! The depth had suddenly changed, the visibility went down to about 2 metres and we had a massive surge motion. I didn't know what had caused it, all I could think of was that it was on or near full moon and that it may be a freak high tide. When the currents changed again and were throwing us around like a like a washing machine, I really got worried. Even the fish were behaving totally erratic, the sharks came so close I could reach out and touch them. That's when I decided to cut the dive short, at about 35 minutes into the dive. We literally crawled, holding onto the reef to get to the 5 m safety stop. Like flags in the wind. I don't know what we would've done if the boat wasn't there to pick us up. Santana, the local dive master, in the meantime was frantic with worry and came with our other dive boat to see if we were ok, thinking that we had tied down to the reef. When we hit the surface and heard what had happened and we broke ALL records getting divers back on board! We headed for Halaveli, not knowing what to expect. Back in Halaveli everyone thought that
they had lost us and it was a welcome to remember! It was a 'once in a lifetime' experience which I hope never to repeat! My guardian angel may not be around next time. It's amazing how the different nationalities reacted to this crisis, the Italians wanted to know immediately how quickly they will be evacuated back to Italy and were frantic, the Germans wanted to know the exact reason for the tsunami and more details, whereas all the English got themselves a beer and a high spot to watch what was happening! It's really an unimaginable disaster, which we only started hearing about as the days passed. Here on Halaveli, in the Ari Atoll, we were more protected by other islands around us, so the water damage was minimal. All the normal water activities have resumed and we are diving again. We had to wait for the strong currents to subside, so we will only really start to see if there is a lot of damage to coral as we visit the various dive sites.
Well, there you have it - I dived the tsunami and survived!!
Wishing you all that is beautiful for 2005!!
ciao for now
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