Scuba diver dies during operations at NPA facility

A scuba diver, Mr Kelvin Ngwa, has been found dead five days after reportedly missing amid an unapproved diving activity at the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) facility in Warri, Delta.

The Diving Personnel Development Foundation (DPDF) disclosed this in a statement signed by its Principal Investigator, Mr Julius Ugwala, in Lagos on Tuesday.

According to the statement, at about 11: 00 a.m. on May 2, the scuba diver went missing during a salvage dive for air lifting around a submerged barge at NPA Warri, with a depth of 15 meters.

“He had successfully air lifted during the first dive and was given a pull to come to surface so he could check his air gauge, which was allegedly at 100 bars.

“Thereafter, he took the second dive, but the tender noticed the diver soon stopped responding to pulls and deployed a standby diver who followed the lifeline down.

” Sadly, the standby diver found scuba’s cylinder, with body harness and sign of little entanglement,” Ugwala said.

Ugwala, who is also Nigeria’s Chief Inspector of Diving, observed that the accident took place at Matrix/Ayiri tank farm, NPA Warri.

The diving expert lamented that no approval was granted to the company for the commencement of any diving operation within Nigeria territorial water in line with the Diving at Work Regulations.

He said some possible causes of the incident include substandard equipment, inexperience, faulty demand valve gauge, limited volume of air in the cylinder, inadequate size of team and unqualified dive supervisor.

Ugwala said diving research should be embarked upon for continuous improvement in the sector and urged that accidents were reported and investigated properly.

“Programmes should be targeted at aspiring and current leaders who want to understand diving business practices be encouraged,” he recommended.

DPDF is a non-profit organisation concerned about the total well-being of divers.

It encourages equal work opportunities, promotes safe diving operations, while aiming at an industry without incident or accidents.

DPDF drives studies and analysis of events and mishaps with the aim of drawing attention to gaps in the sector and making recommendations on how those gaps can be closed.

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Written by Nike

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