Posted by . on October 05, 2003 at 14:31:19:
In Reply to: Re: SCUBA Death near Long Point (Catalina Island) posted by Max Bottomtime on October 05, 2003 at 10:21:15:
Body of diver found
Catalina: Dana Point man, located tangled in kelp, was hunting lobster.
By Karen Robes
AVALON -- Authorities on Friday recovered the body of a man diving for lobsters at Long Point, a popular dive spot between Avalon and the Isthmus on Catalina island.
Police identified the man as Robert Murdoch, a 40-year-old self-employed contractor from Dana Point. Murdoch was found about 50 feet below the water tangled in kelp, with his tank out of air, said Los Angeles County Avalon Station Sgt. Martin Dailey.
Murdoch and a friend were diving for lobsters around 9:30 p.m. Thursday when they lost track of each other, Dailey said. When Murdoch failed to emerge from the water, his friend notified Los Angeles County lifeguards.
They searched for several hours, but could not locate the man because of poor visibility, officials said.
Teams of deputies, lifeguards and an emergency services unit set out the next day and recovered his body at 5:21 p.m., Dailey said. Authorities are still investigating the cause of his death. They did not know whether Murdoch was an expert or novice diver.
Divers often travel to Long Point, especially during the lobster season, which usually runs from early October to February or March, said Mickey Gallagher, section chief for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
This year, the season began at midnight Sept. 26. Most people dive at night because lobsters are nocturnal creatures. A license to hunt lobsters is required.
A total of about four diving accidents occur annually in Los Angeles County, Gallagher said.
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