Made another dive on the AJ Fuller today – but this one ended up being a pretty short event.
There were four divers including myself and we were broken into two teams. We descended to the bottom in about 3 minutes, but this time the shot ball from our descent line was sitting on the wreck, so our bottom depth was 220ft.
The first team had already tied in a reel to the line and were out in front of us by a couple minutes. My partner and I were running parallel to each other and on opposite sides of their line. We made our way from the center of the ship to the outside beam.
On reaching the outside beam of the Fuller, I looked over to see my partner’s scooter doing its best to drag him over the edge of the ship. Its main compartment seal had failed and the scooter was completely flooded – this made the scooter weigh a good 50lbs. Having a 50 pound negative weight attached to you isn’t a great way to make your way around at 220ft, so we thumbed the dive and headed for home. Just before our ascent my buddy unclipped his scooter and tied it in to our up line so as not to have to deal with the negative weight.
By the 25 minute mark we were back at the surface for a dive that normally has a run time closer to 90minutes. The visibility was so bad on the bottom the other team, one of which was shooting video, called their dive short as well.
With the total amount of gear we take along for a dive like this, there are lots of opportunities for problems. So when things do go wrong we just learn to deal with it. The AJ Fuller isn’t going anywhere soon, so the only thing you can do is take it in stride.