Two men have died while cave diving in “Buford Springs Cave” in Weeki Wachee, Florida.
According to investigators, at approximately 12:20 p.m., a 911 call was placed to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office regarding a possible Drowning.
Deputies say the call came from one of three juveniles, ages 15, 15, and 17, who arrived at the park around 9 a.m., to swim and hang out by the water.
The teen said that at approximately 11 a.m., two adult men arrived at their location.
As the adults prepared for their dive, deputies say the men chatted with the juveniles. Both adults then entered the water and dove for a short time before resurfacing.
When the adults resurfaced, they engaged in conversation with one another, according to investigators.
The juveniles told investigators that the conversation was in regards to going back down into the “cave” and whether or not they had enough air in their tanks to complete their dive.
Deputies say that one of the divers is believed to have mentioned that he possibly had a leak in his tank. But after a short time, both adults dove back down under the water.
A short time had passed and the juveniles saw one of the divers come to the surface.
The teens told deputies that the diver was floating face down, which the juveniles believed he was doing purposely, to look for the other diver who had yet to resurface.
Before long, the juveniles noticed there were no bubbles coming to the surface, like there had been earlier.
The juveniles swam over to check on him and received no response. The three juveniles were able to get the diver over to the dock but were unable to lift him out of the water.
Upon arrival, two deputies jumped into the water, and together, lifted the diver onto the dock. The diver was obviously deceased, according to investigators.
Deputies waited for the other diver to come to the surface. Knowing the divers discussed the amount of air in their tanks, deputies believed he would be surfacing any minute, as he would be running out of air.
As time passed and the second diver did not surface, it was surmised that he most likely experienced some type of problem in the cave.
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Several members of the International Underwater Cave Rescue and Recovery (IUCRR) responded to the scene to attempt a recovery mission for the second diver.
“These highly specialized cave divers entered the water and began the search for the second diver,” said Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.
“The IUCRR divers located the second diver approximately 137 feet below the surface. Obviously deceased, the diver was recovered and brought to the surface,” said HCSO.
Neither of the divers had any obvious signs of trauma and both appeared to have the appropriate diving equipment. It is unknown at this time if all the equipment was working properly.
Both victims were turned over to the Medical Examiner.
Detectives located identification, belonging to both victims, inside the vehicle in which they arrived. Next-of-kin notifications were made with the victim’s families.