Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Diving During an Earthquake

That's what DIVE's PhotoPro columnist, Alex Mustard, was doing during a 5.8 quake in Grand Cayman last week.

No one was injured in the earthquake, which measured 5.8 on the Richter Scale.

Alex said: 'Thankfully it was only a minor earthquake, but even underwater it was clear all was not normal. The most obvious sign was the noise, a deep roaring, rumbling sound, not unlike the sound of the engines on a large ship. Anyone who has dived on the Breakwater in Plymouth when the ferry goes past will know what I mean.

'Immediately I looked up to try to see a ship, but soon realised the sound was something else. My next thought was that it was a free flow, but could see no bubbles. After about 15 seconds the sound stopped. No sand was stirred up and I didn't notice the any changes in the fish.

'It was only when we got back to shore that we heard it was an earthquake. Buildings had been shaken, and furniture moved. A 6m sink hole had opened up by one house. All of which made me feel quite relieved as we had been diving at Snapper Hole, where the reef is cut with caves and caverns. I was glad I was not in an overhead environment when it was shaking.

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