Hinahina fatality - New Zealand

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DandyDon

DandyDon

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As I have stated here before, I am simply amazed by the number of diving deaths in New Zealand, a country with a population similar to Sydney. The whole of Australia (with five times the population) does not have as many deaths as NZ. Even Sydney does not have as many deaths.

Why are there so many? I have no idea.
Here in the gun-loving US we're seeing increases in shooting fatalities, in part from Covid-fatigue, unemployment, and more free time. I've noticed these other New Zealand fatalities this year...
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Hinahina fatality - New Zealand
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Navy sailor critically injured - New Zealand
Diver lost near Hen and Chicken Islands - New Zealand
Motutapu Island fatality - Auckland, New Zealand
Diver missing - Akaroa Harbour, New Zealand

"Water Safety New Zealand stat istics show there were 11 diver fatalities in 2019, an increase on the five-year average of six underwater sport deaths a year."

Search for Catlins diver takes emotional toll, rescuers say - NZ Herald
An emergency helicopter search for a missing diver near Owaka Heads on Sunday took an emotional toll, rescuers say.

A 23-year-old man, who has not yet been named by police, died while free-diving at the popular Catlins snorkelling spot about noon on Sunday, after he became separated from a fellow diver.

Otago Regional Rescue Helicopter chief pilot Graeme Gale said the drowning had been ''sobering'' for the rescue crew, and was a ''terrible tragedy'' for the victim's family and friends.

Read More
''Everyone was out there having a great time and then tragedy strikes.''


A small comfort was the rapid location of the missing man, less than 100m offshore at the Owaka Inlet, which meant his body could be returned to his family to bring ''some closure'', Gale said.

The helicopter crew included two water rescue staff and a paramedic, and the man was found by 1.40pm.

Police said the diver was not able to be revived and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Wellington-based New Zealand Underwater Association presi dent Tristan Reynard said he was not aware of the Catlins incident and expressed his condolences to the family of the dead man.

The association had launched a campaign this summer aimed at reducing diving accidents, following a recent upsurge in both numbers of divers and diving fatalities.

Water Safety New Zealand stat istics show there were 11 diver fatalities in 2019, an increase on the five-year average of six underwater sport deaths a year.
 

Shasta_man

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Except financial issues, I think the root of why so many shootings is the level of maturity in people and the perception of reality people get from media and social media, along with a lack of mental health recognition and assistance. Beyond that is how guns are viewed.

As an older person like you and someone who owns a couple of guns, after so many terrible shootings of people and little innocent children for God's sake, I wondered what the heck has changed from early in my life to now. What's apparent is the maturity of people.

They have a hard time dealing with setbacks and have inordinately large concerns about respect. Small problems happen and they deal with it with extreme actions. A young woman breaks up with them so they kill her and themselves. With years of life experience, I have come to realize that some issue sucks now but there are decades ahead and it will be a distant memory.

The perception of life we get from the media is a constant pressure. I'm not surprised that Fox News watchers think the world is under attack because the stories you see there are about the craziest crimes and terrible stories and things to fear that sets a perception of the balance of what is happening in the world. And the public is partly to blame because our consumption is what drives the news the media provides. If it didn't sell they wouldn't sell it.

Lastly is the super promotion of guns as a definition of uber machismo and as an ultimate device whose ability is never enough. 40 years ago many people owned guns but a lot bigger proportion viewed them as just tools. Now the ultimate machine gun is needed and usually just to ogle in preparation for some attack that never happens. Goes back to the same perception issue.

At the same time many people are numb to violence now, so these diver deaths which occur suddenly with the person gone from one minute to the next for such simple reasons yet can't be fixed are hard to take.
 

dmaziuk

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I don't quite follow. Is not illegal to dive without training, just stupid.

We are a pretty free country and dont need licenses for much thankfully. I can sail my yacht all over the coast, freedive and scuba dive for food, fish and anchor pretty much wherever i like without a license for any of the above.

And the yanks think they have freedom....

It's not that kind of freedom. But anyway, you may be right: I don't see it anywhere in the original link that it says the guy was on scuba. For all we know he was freediving for abalone, perfectly legally, and so the rest of this threadlet does not follow indeed.
 
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DandyDon

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judyo1

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Lots of diving fatalities in NZ because of (IMHO):
- close proximity to water - it's easy to go diving
- potentially challenging conditions - it's not tropical diving
- kiwi 'she'll be right' attitude
 

Julius SCHMIDT

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It seems plenty older folk also find themselves on the path of least resistance wise or not, but about this
the ocean no matter your headspace training and experience given circumstances can grab you and kill you
 

SurteesDiver

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The other thing is that our media fatality reports usually do not distinguish between freedivers and scuba divers. My gut feel is that it is about 3 to 1 (freedive vs scuba). In the freedive category we have a huge number of divers, usually with no training and spending a lot of time in the water. NZ water visibility is often very poor meaning that the safety system of 1 up 1 down does not work because you can't see the 1 down, so at best they "same ocean" buddy, but very often are alone.
 

Bob DBF

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In the freedive category we have a huge number of divers, usually with no training and spending a lot of time in the water. NZ water visibility is often very poor meaning that the safety system of 1 up 1 down does not work because you can't see the 1 down, so at best they "same ocean" buddy, but very often are alone.

Sounds quite similar to the NorCal coast here in the US. I agree the 1 up 1 down is more about knowing someone's last location, rather than being of much assistance, that's why going solo never bothered me.

I started free diving before there was training so I guess those that I emulated must have known something, and being in the water all my life I know when to quit.
 
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