Australia dive industry rejects call for tougher regulations

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Australia SCUBA

CAIRNS, Australia — The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) is calling for strict government regulation of the recreational dive industry after another fatal scuba diving accident.

Authorities have not yet identified the latest victim but told CDNN a 58-year-old male tourist from American died while diving off the Osprey V dive charter boat.

After the fatal accident, local tourism promoter, Col McKenzie, of Dive Queensland, blamed the victim’s death on a “pre-existing medical problem”.

Although the police, coroner and Workplace Health and Safety officers have just started their investigation of the fatal diving accident and medical examiners have not yet determined the cause of death, McKenzie based his instant armchair analysis on “statistics (that) show the most likely cause of a divers death at that age is heart failure”.

While McKenzie pitched his “boomers die because they’re old” rationale to local newspaper reporters, the MUA blasted the self-regulated diving industry for failing to provide adequate safety standards.

MUA spokesman Mick Doleman said people have contacted the union with concerns about diving safety standards and it is time for the diving industry, the Government and unions to develop professional training and safety standards.

Dive Queensland says the industry’s regulations are adequate, despite union claims.

www.abc.net.au

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