Posted by DougD on November 04, 2001 at 13:26:57:
I went out to Palos Verdes this morning but didn't do the dive. I was well on my way by the time you sent your e-mail. No biggie.
6 divers did go in but I didn't like the look of it. Two others also decided not to go in. They seemed to do alright getting in. Just when I was about to leave a boat crashed into the rocks just inside the cove. It was an odd thing to see. A bunch of people were standing up at the parking lot with me and we were all commenting on how close the boat was getting to the rocks. We were all wondering aloud why he was drifting in so close, and about the time we decided he was in trouble he crashed up on the rocks, at one point laying almost completely on his side. I thought for sure they would capsize. For a moment they were high out of the water on the rocks, but no one got off. Eventually the surge lifted them back down into the water, but they sat there grinding on the rocks. There was someone there (in the parking lot) with a radio who contacted the Coast Guard who said they were aware of the trouble.
I grabbed my camera (snapped a few pictures on my way) and first aid pouch and ran down to where they were, but a lifeguard boat arrived on the scene about the same time I did. I asked if everyone was okay (there men and a boy of about nine), but they weren't very talkative.
A lifeguard jumped in with a line and attached it to a tow ring on the bow of the boat and they pulled him free, ripping off the swim step in the process. The outboard portion of the engine must have been torn to hell by the grinding. As the boat was pulled out it hit a large submerged rock and pitched about 85 degrees to starboard tossing everyone around on the deck. After that they were safe and I snapped a few more shots as they were pulled away. Also, I pulled their swimstep up onto the rocks so it wouldn't wash out to sea.
By the time I made it back to the top of the hill I saw two of the divers coming in. One exited okay but the other had a bit harder time of it, being raked over the rocks a bit. Anyway, the tide was coming in and I watched the vis diminish the whole time.
Another odd thing: I arrived in PV at about 7:23 a.m. and wasn't entirely sure about the location so I headed into the old Marine Land area. When I got to the far end of the parking lot by the gate I saw two guys with brown camo jackets, bluejeans, black watchcaps, and automatic rifles! Made me a little nervous, but they did not approach me while I sat and waited to see if anyone else would show up. Any idea what those guys were about? Guards? Lunatics?
At 7:50 I decided I was definitely in the wrong spot, looked at Craig's e-mail again, and decided I should be back at the parking lot on Palos Verdes Dr. S. where, of course, I found everyone gathered.
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