exploded tank out of hydro

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Posted by . on November 17, 2001 at 13:57:19:


Scherrer's death a "shame'

November 15,2001

By Tony Judnich
News staff writer

The death of a well-respected diving expert who lost his life
while on the job Tuesday has struck the local diving
community hard, family and friends say.

Ron Scherrer, co-owner of Dive Center of Sebastian, was
killed Tuesday at his store when an air tank he had been
filling for a customer exploded. Scherrer, 72, died from
massive chest and head trauma, Sebastian Police Detective
Joe Dillon said.

Scherrer's wife and the store's co-owner, Virgene, and a
customer were in the shop at 1716 U.S. 1 when the
explosion occurred, but they were not injured, Dillon said.

Chris Hammett, co-owner of Deep Six Dive and Watersports
in Vero Beach, said Scherrer was "a great competitor, a
fantastic technician. He knew a lot of about diving.

Scherrer's death "is definitely a dreadful shame to the
industry, that's for sure," he said.

Dillon said the tank that had exploded had been weakened
by rust and the tank's inspections were not up to date.

Condensation had caused the tank to rust inside from "top
to bottom," he said. Air tanks are supposed to be visually
inspected annually and undergo hydrostatic pressure tests
every five years, Dillon said.

Dillon said the tank that exploded was made in 1988 and
received its last visual inspection in October 1999. It
received its last hydrostatic test in 1991, he said.

Mrs. Scherrer said her husband was "a very gentlemanly
person, very friendly and always a very happy person. He
loved being in the scuba business. All of the people in the
industry really respected him.

In addition to his wife, Ron Scherrer is survived by his four
children: Susan of Minneapolis, Minn.; Connie and Mike,
both of Indianapolis; and Steve, of Grant.

Mrs. Scherrer said she doesn't know if she'll continue to
operate Dive Center.

"We have a lot of things to think about," she said.

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