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Shark nets in New South Wales
Shark nets in New South Wales (Sam Hood, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

Unintended Deaths Soar in NSW Shark Net Program

According to the findings, more than half of the 208 non-target species ensnared in the nets over the past eight months met a grim fate, with 134 animals, including critically endangered grey nurse sharks and leatherback turtles, among the casualties. The figures, made public as the nets were removed for the season, highlight the significant toll the program exacts on marine biodiversity.

Freediver Alessia Zecchini Sets New CMAS World Record

Alessia Zecchini surpassed her previous CMAS Free Immersion world record by 3 meters on April 19th, reaching a depth of 104 meters. Her record dive took her 3min 46sec.

This new FIM record was established during the Camotes Freediving Challenge near Cebu, Philippines, on its second day. This week-long, limited-entry event began on April 17th. In Free Immersion, divers do not use fins and must descend and ascend by pulling themselves along the rope.

Screening of "50 Hours Underwater" at MIDE in Kuala Lumpur

Providing a rare glimpse into the mysterious underwater world, the documentary features captivating stories untold, vibrant visuals, and thought-provoking themes that speak of resilience, triumph and societal issues.

In celebrating the incredible diversity and complexity of the underwater world, along with its numerous characters and issues, the documentary aims to ignite conversations and foster better understanding of, and appreciation for, the deep blue.

Jared Hires, DEMA 2023

Jared Hires Cause of Death: Medical, Not Machine or Mistake

Exactly a week ago my phone started pinging late at night. I was getting messages from too many people who I deem a credible source, of the tragic news that Jared Hires had died at Plura Cave.

I got the news confirmed. Cried. Then opened up my laptop and wrote an article announcing Jared Hire's death. At present over 45,000 of you have read it. 

Jared Hires, Lamar Hires, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, XRay Mag, X-Ray Magazine
"Diving is everything to me. It is my livelihood and how I support my family, but it is also my escape and happy place" Jared Hires

Jared Hires Dies at Plura Cave

The Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation NRK (nrk.no) first reported the diving incident:

An American citizen has been confirmed dead after a diving accident in the Plura Cave in Rana. Although a defibrillator was used after a short time, his life was not saved.

The following is a first-hand statement given to me by one of the divers involved with the fatal dive. They spoke to me on the evening of 4 April 2023. 

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Soaring insurance rates threaten the economic well-being and family life of dive business owners and employees. Many operators are forced to pass on these increased costs to their customers.

Dive Boat Act Proposes Relief for US Dive Operators

The enactment of the Small Passenger Vessel Act (SPVA) in 2022 amended US maritime law, affecting the liability of small passenger vessel owners for safety violations that lead to accidents.