South Yorkshire dad dies in front of son on scuba diving trip

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A DAD from South Yorkshire died tragically while scuba diving as his horrified son looked on.

The 52-year-old man, from Rotherham, was diving off the coast of Scotland when he fell ill and lost consciousness 23ft below the surface.

A lifeboat crew and paramedics fought for more than an hour to revive him before he was airlifted to hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

The tragedy happened as the dad, his son and five others went diving near Eyemouth on the Berwickshire coast.

The casualty was pulled from the water ‘deeply unconscious’ and taken to the shore.

Alistair Crow, from the St Abbs RNLI lifeboat, said: “It must have been terrible for his son to witness that. The man did a dive in the morning and was on his second dive in the afternoon when something went wrong. I don’t know what happened.

“I don’t think it was the bends but we won’t know exactly how he died.

“When we got the emergency call from the coastguard, we were so quick in getting out there, the guy was still being held alongside the dive board.

“When we got him, he was deeply unconscious. We got him on board the lifeboat and were back in very quick.

“We worked on him for more than an hour. The ambulance came after 40 minutes and we continued to work on him for a while in the back of the ambulance.”

The party had been diving off a vessel called the Selkie. The boat’s skipper, Peter Gibson, was unavailable for comment.

Alistair said the spot where the man died was a magnet for divers.

“The Berwickshire coast attracts lots of divers because its underworld scenery and marine life is second to none,” he said.

“I don’t know what went wrong for this chap.

“He seemed in reasonable shape. It could have been anything, a heart attack or maybe he had taken in water.”

Sea conditions were calm when the lifeboat was deployed at around 3.30pm on Saturday.

Police will hand a report to the local procurator fiscal – the Scottish equivalent of a coroner – who will decide whether to hold a fatal accident inquiry. The man has not yet been formally identified.

The incident is the second in the area in recent months to claim the life of a diver from South Yorkshire.

David Ruston, 59, from Barnsley, died near Eyemouth in June.