Fermoy’s team descends from troubled depths to dive into the Lusitania wreck


BACK in 2008, Timmy Carey and Adrian O’Hara of the Blackwater Sub Aqua Club were part of a four-person dive team that helped shed new light on a maritime mystery that had baffled historians for nearly a century.

a cache of ammunition the team found when they descended 93 meters to the wreckage of the ill-fated RMS Lusitania Dick Vaughan surfacing from a 75-meter trimix dive during the year, in preparation for the dive on the RMS Lusitania. Photo Timmy Carey 12 miles from the Old Head of Kinsale has made headlines around the world and has added credit to the ‘smoking gun’ theory which many say sparked the US entry into World War I.

Since then, Timmy and other club members had completed six separate diving expeditions to the site, the most recent in recent months after 12 months of intensive dive training.

Widely regarded as the second most famous wreck in the world after the RMS Titanic, Timmy said the Lusitania was one of the most sought after dives by technical divers around the world.

“At 31,550 tonnes, the Lusitania is a huge wreck and is very run down the sleek and elegant ship that crossed the Atlantic in luxurious style and at record speeds at the turn of the 20th century. In addition, the vessel is often festooned with hanging abandoned fishing nets, which could prove fatal to a diver if they get tangled, ”said Timmy.

He said the depth of the wreckage means divers exploring it must dive with mixed gases and be very careful as they come to the surface to avoid potentially fatal decompression sickness, more commonly known as “the turns. “.

He said most people’s mental image of diving at these depths comes from television documentaries, which are mostly shot in clear tropical waters.

“They give a very misleading picture of what diving 90 meters in Irish waters looks like. In addition to the rough seas off the Irish coast, there is also a complete lack of ambient light below 65 meters. Diving off the Irish coast at these depths could be compared to using a torch at night, ”said Timmy.

Despite these obstacles, the team, made up of Timmy and his five partners Ronan Barry, Brendan Desmond and Dick Vaughan who were diving the wreck for the first time, spent 25 minutes exploring their bridge.

While the team then had to spend two and a half hours decompressing in murky visibility, the pod of dolphins surrounding them in the shallows proved to be a welcome distraction.

During the dive, the team managed to capture stunning photos and fascinating video footage of the once majestic liner, which will be posted on YouTube in the coming weeks.

Timmy praised Rona, Brendan and Dick for successfully completing their first dive in this iconic wreck, describing it as a “huge achievement” for them.

“Many thanks also to our boatman Carroll on Harpy, to the Kinsale Old Head Lusitania museum and to the signal tower for granting permission to dive, to Duchas for the diving permit, to the captain of the Kinsale port, to the local receiver. wrecks and a number of members of Blackwater who were all part of the dive team and without whom the dive could not have happened, ”said Timmy.

“After recording such an iconic wreck in the logbook in 2021, the next big question is what will our next expedition be? “

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