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During a VWT record attempt yesterday at the 'Only One’ center a sled-diver blacked out at 35-40 mtrs. We’re told it took 4:30 of CPR to bring her back to consciousness.
The sled-diving facilities in Santorini and Sharm el Sheikh are regarded as the most advanced and experienced in the world. They both satisfy all AIDA regulations. In the last five weeks they have in turn been involved in one fatal and one near-fatal incident.
To those who claim VWT is the safer cousin to NLT, the statistic that of the last three world record attempts, two have ended in ~40m blackouts requiring intensive CPR is unequivocal – especially when you take into account that in all CWT/CNF/FIM diving record attempts (numbering hundreds or thousands) there has NEVER been a blackout that deep.
The consensus of the AIDA International committee that conducted an investigation into the June fatality was that the current guidelines are basically adequate (the only other result of the investigation was various items of conjecture regarding the cause of death). I don’t think it’s presumptive to assume that in light of yet another sled-related incident this view is erroneous and needs to be re-addressed immediately, if not by the appointed committee then by the AIDA assembly itself.
Before, there were several doubts to the idea of a referendum on the cessation of AIDA’s officiation of sled-diving.
a) Okay, NLT may be dangerous, but VWT isn’t really that risky.
b) There have been training fatalities (with AIDA-approved equipment) but so far no incidents in official AIDA record attempts.
c) Why the rush? Can’t we wait until the results of the investigation into the June fatality are released?
All three of these doubts are answered by the latest incident, which was (a) in VWT, (b) in an AIDA world record attempt, and (c) had been announced for mid-July, s…
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