THIS WEEK (September 15-22) AT REEF SEEKERS DIVE
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REEF SEEKERS REPAIR DEPARTMENT
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Want to travel??? Upcoming 2019 vacation trips:
• Maldives - October 12-24 (SOLD OUT!!!)
• Sea of Cortez (Cabo Pulmo) - December 4-10 (SOLD OUT AGAIN!!!)
START THINKING ABOUT 2020 . . .
GET MORE INFO ON ALL OF OUR VACATION TRIPS HERE: http://www.reefseekers.com/foreign_trips.html
Upcoming local dives & classes:
• Sat., September 21 - Catalina Express - Avalon Underwater Park ($150 - 3dives)
• Wed., September 25 - CLASS - Fish ID (Reef Seekers Westwood - $25)
• Sat., October 6 - Catalina Express - Avalon Underwater Park ($150 - 3dives)
To sign up for any of these dives, either call us at 310/652-4990 or
e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
CONCEPTION UPDATE - Not too much has changed in the last week. All 34 victims have now been recovered and identified and their families notified. What's left of the Conception hull has been raised and transported by barge to a military facility on the mainland, where the NTSB will likely try to reconstruct the boat as best they can and then run various tests and do investigations to determine how the fire started and why it spread apparently so fast. USCG has issued a Marine Information Safety Bulletin where, among other things, they suggest not allowing unsupervised (as in overnight) charging of batteries. In addition, the National Transportation Safety Board released on Thursday their preliminary report which states that all crew members were asleep when the fire broke out, presumably around 3AM. The attorney for Truth Aquatics has pushed back on that, stating that one of the crew did a walk-through of the galley/salon area at 2:30AM, and all was well. Needless to say, this is a BIG issue and one that will receive plenty of scrutiny down the road.
CHANGES SO FAR - The biggest change so far is likely in you. Every diver is now hyper-aware of things like fire hazards, escape hatches, and the like. Even if nothing else were to change, this is an enormous step forward for us as a community to insure something like this never happens again. But dive operations are taking notice too. You all saw what Reef Seekers will be doing from last week's note. The Nautilus Gallant Lady - the same boat we'll use in December for Cabo Pulmo - delayed leaving port a few days ago so that owner Mike Lever could have a fire suppression system installed along with cutting a second escape hatch. I saw a post on FaceBook that for a trip this weekend, the Peace had everyone climb through the escape hatch of that boat. And the USCG safety notice urges boats to review crew training, fire fighting abilities, passenger briefings, and the like. So awareness, along with some specifics, is definitely on the rise. And as I've said repeatedly, hopefully something good can come out of all of this and being safer certainly fits that mold.
DONATE TO THE VICTIMS FAMILIES - D.A.N., along with some other sponsors listed, has set up a donation page to help the families affected by all of this. As I'm writing this, they've raised over $146,000. If you'd like to donate, this is the link: https://www.diversalertnetwork.org/theconception/. Your donation is 100% tax-deductible.
On to other things . . .
AVALON THIS SATURDAY - We're going to Avalon for lots of reasons this coming Saturday. We'll be leaving out of San Pedro on the 8AM boat, doing three dives in the Underwater Park, and then leaving Avalon at 5:30PM. (We'll take a break for lunch between dive #2 and #3.) $150 covers you for the Catalina Express, taxi to the Park and back, and tank rentals, plus all the fun and (hopefully) Giant Sea Bass sightings you can handle. Call us at 310/652-4990 if you want to come. We've already got 5 confirmed so this is a definite go.
ONE MORE SAD NOTE - Just to be clear, this is NOT related to the Conception fire. But it's my sad duty to tell you that longtime Reef Seekers diver Pat O'Brien has died at the age of 85. Pat did a lot of foreign trips with us, and was particularly fond of Bonaire. She was certainly a character in her own right - and I mean that in the best possible way - and her easy laugh and gentle demeanor will certainly be missed.
And that'll do it for now. Have a great week, and let's go diving soon!!!