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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat misskit's Avatar
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    Mallorca diver survives 60 hours in air bubble



    A Spanish diver who survived 60 hours in an underground air pocket has described how he began to hallucinate as his compressed air tank ran out.

    Xisco Gracia became trapped in a cave in Mallorca on Saturday after his air tank malfunctioned.

    His diving partner was forced to leave him behind to go in search of help.

    But it took more than two days to reach the experienced speleologist and geographer, who was left sitting in the dark alone.

    "I lost track of time. I thought it had been five days, too long, so I thought [my friend] could not get out and could not find me," Mr Gracia told Diario de Mallorca [in Spanish].

    He added: "After so long breathing an air so charged with carbon dioxide, I sometimes saw some things, like lights or bubbles, and I thought [someone] had come to rescue me - but when they did not arrive, I was discouraged."


    'Mentally recovered'

    His colleague, with whom he had been examining the topography of the cave, had managed to leave the cave and find help - but rescue efforts were hampered by the visibility in the water, which was described as being "like cocoa".

    However, the two divers were praised for doing the right thing.

    Enrique Ballesteros, of the Underwater Activities Task Force of Barcelona, told news agency EFE: "They could have tried to stretch one [diver's] air, but surely that would have been suicide and both would have died."

    Mr Gracia, in his 50s, an experienced diver and expert in his field, according to local media, survived by drinking from a thin pool of fresh water in the air bubble, which was about 40 metres below the surface until he was found, 900 metres from the entrance to the cave, at about midnight on Monday.

    He was kept in hospital overnight, but appears to be uninjured and already feels he has "mentally recovered", according to Primicia Web [in Spanish].

    The local Guardia Civil said they would review the event to see if any lessons could be learned.

    Mallorca diver survives 60 hours in air bubble - BBC News

  2. #2
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    NZdick1983's Avatar
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    Wow, all kinds of tough that bastard...

  3. #3
    Custom Title Changer
    CSFFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NZdick1983
    Wow, all kinds of tough that bastard...
    Exactly....

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by NZdick1983
    Wow, all kinds of tough that bastard...
    Yep.
    You need big balls just to go into a cave like that (40 m below and nearly a km into the cave, with visibility like cocoa).
    Quote Originally Posted by misskit
    He was kept in hospital overnight, but appears to be uninjured and already feels he has "mentally recovered"

  5. #5
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    ^^^Too true.
    Reminds me of a book I read about the Russian sub Kursk disaster.
    Apparently a flash fire/explosion killed the survivors before their air ran out but they had been alive for many days.
    What nightmares are made of.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by NZdick1983 View Post
    Wow, all kinds of tough that bastard...
    And mental with it.

  7. #7
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    He's going to have some nightmares for a while.

  8. #8
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    Damn lucky survivor. A good story to read for the 'never say never' crowd myself included.

  9. #9
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    Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    Must have been terrifying. I got trapped in a wreck in the Red Sea off of Saudi - only for about ten minutes - and that was freaky enough.

  10. #10
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    So, from the details - no back up tank, no stage tanks, no guide line.

    Tough, but also very, very lucky.

  11. #11
    or TizYou?
    TizMe's Avatar
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    Doesn't look like they were well prepared for what they were doing.

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat misskit's Avatar
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    Two days in an underwater cave running out of oxygen


    Three months ago, Xisco Grącia experienced what he describes as every diver's worst nightmare - he found himself in an underwater cave, relying on an air pocket for survival. As hours turned into days he realised he might not be found in time.


    On Saturday 15 April, Xisco Grącia slipped into the water in Mallorca for a routine dive. The geology teacher spent most weekends exploring and mapping the island's complex system of underwater caves.

    "Mallorca is much more beautiful underground than above ground," he says.


    Xisco Grącia, pictured carrying four tanks of air which last for an hour each

    He and his dive buddy, Guillem Mascaró, wanted to explore Sa Piqueta, a cave with numerous chambers 1km from the entrance of the labyrinth. They swam underwater for an hour to get there.

    While Grącia spent time collecting rock samples, Mascaró swam off to chart a nearby chamber.

    It was as they headed for home that several things went wrong at once. Grącia met Mascaró by chance at a junction, and they stirred up silt from the ground, making it difficult to see.

    They then realised that their guideline - a narrow nylon wire which led back to the entrance - had either broken or slipped.

    MORE Two days in an underwater cave running out of oxygen - BBC News

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maanaam View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NZdick1983
    Wow, all kinds of tough that bastard...
    Yep.
    You need big balls just to go into a cave like that (40 m below and nearly a km into the cave, with visibility like cocoa).
    Quote Originally Posted by misskit
    He was kept in hospital overnight, but appears to be uninjured and already feels he has "mentally recovered"
    Gives me a claustrophobia attack just thinking about it.

  14. #14
    Sukhumvet
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    The geology teacher...
    Got rocks in his head?

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