The Colombian dive boat Maria Patricia lost 5 divers in Malpelo.
One of them was found alive by one of Yemaya's skiffs after drifting overnight in the ocean.
2 more divers were rescued by the Colombian army a day later, 45 nautical miles from the island.
After searching for 10 days, the dead body of Colombian diver, Erika Vanessa Diaz, was found 140 nautical miles from Malpelo.
The dive guide, Carlos Jimenez, is still missing.
Search operations commenced on our second diving day, with the Colombian armada dispatching 2 ships and 2 airplanes. A US aircraft, which constantly flew over the area, spotted the 2 survivors floating in the sea.
Our mothership Yemaya as well as our 2 speedboats participated in the marine search for three full days.
We want to express our gratitude to all our guests onboard for their understanding, solidarity and help during the rescue operation. We were not able to dive for three days, but everyone was supportive of our efforts.
A big THANK YOU for this attitude!!!
We are very sad and also very upset about what happened, how it happend and how it was managed from the beginning. These are losses that could have easily been avoided. We do not want to go into detail because it's not our operation and it did not happen on our boat. But we can say for sure that a situation like this never would have happened onboard Yemaya.
Obviously, an accident can always occur. (By the way, we never had an accident in our 7 years of operation in Malpelo.)
However, a catastrophe of this magnitude is more than just an accident and has NOTHING to do with currents or waves.
It has to do with the lack of minimum safety standards and their implementation. It has to do with the lack of adequate safety equipment and well-maintained skiffs that, in case of a lost diver, would guarantee a quick response. It has to do with the lack of responsibility and respect for the lives of the divers onboard.
We are very sorry about the death of Vanessa and the fate of Carlos. We hope that their families will find peace, consolation and relief in this difficult time.
Life goes on. We will keep on diving in Malpelo, with respect for nature and according to the conditions that the ocean imposes. We will go on and improve our operation and try to make the adventure of diving this magnificent underwater world as safe as possible.
A group on our November 29th to December 9th 2016 trip had to cancel due to an illness by one of the members, so you still have a chance to grab one of our last remaining spaces for 2016. Please see below for our updated availabilities.
Best wishes and we hope to see you soon onboard Yemaya.