Taking to social media, PADI Course Director Roihan Han shared an experience fellow diver Por and their team had had during their dive.
Sharing Por’s experience, Roihan inserted the caption: “Our nightmare came true! Recover well Sipadan” to give much needed attention to what took place while Por and his team went on a reef rescue mission in Sipadan.
Here is his story.
“On Friday morning, the Director of Sipadan Marine Park informed us that a 900m-long ghost net drifted into Sipadan Island.”
“The net was stuck on a reef at the depth of between 3-10m from Barracuda Point. Our team of five divers and two rangers started removing the net straightaway.”
“It may sound easy, but we had to take out one coral colony at a time to not destroy it.”
When they had to refill their tanks after diving for seven hours, authorities questioned their motives refilling their tanks in nearby Mabul, but it was smooth sailing from there.
However, they were hit with bad news afterwards, having expressed their hopes that there would not be any dead turtles caught in the ghost net.
“Our worst nightmare would be the dead turtles. There are hundreds of turtles roaming the area. They need to swim up to the surface regularly to breath air.”
“Unfortunately our nightmare came true. Our scout team found one dead turtle, about 30 sharks, hundreds of reef fish and crustaceans.”
“It was the saddest and most depressing dives I’ve ever had.”
“We attempted to rescue the entrapped fish and other marine life with about 50% success rate. 90% of the parrotfish and sharks died, survived fish were badly injured.”
Having buried the dead turtle inside the Turtle Tomb Cave, here is what Por had to say on the rescue mission.
“I still feel depressed to this day. We decided to name the dead turtle Siparan, after a Bajau Laut man who died on the island.”
“I hope this won’t happen again anywhere. And stop consuming excessive amounts of seafood, please.”
Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to all those involved in the rescue effort.
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