Surprise: You are Now Featured on Man versus Wild

I think Ian Cole, a Michigan tourist visiting Australia, likely shaved ten years off of his life after this experience:


Australian authorities are investigating a recent incident in which a Great Barrier Reef dive boat accidentally left behind a U.S. snorkeler, forcing him to swim to another boat.

Ian Cole...said the Passions of Paradise tour boat took off without him Saturday on Michaelmas Cay near Cairns.

Cole, who was given a $200 restaurant voucher as compensation by the tour company, said he feared he would drown in a scenario reminiscent of the 1998 case of abandoned American scuba divers Tom and Eileen Lonergan off nearby Port Douglas - an incident that inspired the film Open Water.

"Panic kicks in, your heart rate goes up, and you don't know what's going to happen. I was sucking water back into my snorkel and was really trying hard to stay calm," Cole told the Sydney Morning Herald.

''When I got to the other boat they looked down like 'what the hell are you doing here?' They said my boat had left 15 minutes ago. I thought they were joking.''

Though I enjoy snorkeling close to shore, I would be "on edge" to take a dive boat into the ocean for a swim.

My personal safety precaution would be to insist that a rope be tied to my leg with the other end securely fastened to the boat captain's leg.

In essence, the boat and captain are not leaving that area without me dragging him into the water.

Also in the article about Mr. Cole's swim, a representative from the marine park tourism operators accused Mr. Cole of embellishing the dangers involved in the incident and offered this gem:

...told the Herald that Cole was "making a mountain out of a molehill," dismissing his ordeal as no worse than "being left behind at a beach."

Yeah, a beach on a DESERTED ISLAND that features predators and an occasional ship passing--a ship with a crew not expecting to see a human being swimming for help.

16 comments:

Lisa said...

Read the original article and wonder who in the world is this dive company's PR person! And this is not the first time divers have been stranded? Unbelievable they are still in operation. True, he should have been with a dive buddy, but that doesn't absolve the company for negligence.

Matthew MacNish said...

My god. Open ocean is terrifying enough already, even on a boat.

Bob G. said...

Slamdunk:
I also enjoy snorkeling (not much need for it here in the Midwest these days, though...lol)when I lvied on the EAST coast.

But to me, this would seem worthy of an "OOPS!" moment!

Guess those Aussies aren't all that familiar with something called a HEAD COUNT?

Then again, if I were snorkeling anywhere, I'd make sure to have a couple FLARES on the old "utility" belt.

Close to shore works for me.

Good post.

Stay safe (and swim with a buddy) out there.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I would probably freak if left in the open water. When I snorkel, I often have to pick up my head to see the world about the water. Not certain why.

Beth Zimmerman said...

I suspect that most reasonable people would be inclined to freak out under those circumstances! YUCK!

Lydia K said...

That would be a living nightmare for me. I couldn't see open water. I can just imagine the hammerheads swimming underneath me...

Stephanie Faris said...

Oh gosh, the movie Open Water was bad enough. Now I'm REALLY not ever snorkeling!

Jennifer Hillier said...

$200?? But he could have died!

So wrong.

Audrey Allure said...

What a scary situation. For someone who can't swim well, I wouldn't know what I'd do.

Miss Caitlin S. said...

um, yeah- scary!!! Have you ever seen the movie "Open Water"? It was so sad and horrid and frightening. I agree, I would be petrified too and would insist on proper precautions!

Maxi said...

If I remember correctly the Americans did not survive their ordeal or were never found.

Can't believe this company is still in operation.

carma said...

we went snorkeling in April when we were on our cruise. I can tell you right now I'd be dead if the boat ever left and to read that some dude was saying that he was making a mountain out of a molehole? pffft - this is inexcusable and so easily prevented by simply counting!!

secret agent woman said...

I did this in the West Indies and it was an amazing experience. But I can't believe they are passing their mistake off as a minor slip-up. I am not a fan of lawsuits, but I think one might be in order here - if for no other reason than to make the company re-think its attitude.

Jen said...

Wrong answer! Their lack of concern makes me want to jot the name of the company down to make sure I never take any trip with them.

Momma Fargo said...

Ew. Slimy things swimming between your legs and big fish that eat you. No way! I'd rather have a bad guy point a gun to my head. Do you think that statement will help Ian get more than just a free meal? LOL. Poor guy.

Nikole Hahn said...

Man vs. Wild minus the camera crew and minus the emergency crew. Scary.