Exploring the breathtaking marine life along the Antarctic Ocean floor and a dormant volcano filled with water might sound like the ultimate extreme diving experience for most divers, but it’s all in a day’s work for a team of divers aboard the Royal Navy’s ice patrol ship HMS Protector, according to Subsea World News.
What Were Those Divers Doing?
These divers braved the frigid temperatures of the Antarctic to verify that strict environmental regulations are still being followed in the area. A primary cause for concern was the MV Bahia Paraiso, a 435-foot Argentine research vessel that sunk in the Antarctic waters back in 1989 when it ran aground. News reports at the time spoke of a 10-mile-wide oil slick surrounding the site of the tragedy. The sunken vessel spilled hundreds of thousands of liters of diesel and caused a massive marine environmental disaster. The remaining traces of the diesel were recently cleaned up by an Argentine and Dutch team.
Perks of the Job
While inspecting the submerged vessel’s hull for signs of additional leakage, the HMS Protector divers discovered that no more diesel was flowing and captured the scene with underwater cameras. While the divers were in the area, they had the rare opportunity to see the underwater wonder of a volcano caldera that was full of water — apparently one of only two of its kind in the entire world, the article noted.
As if this weren’t enough, this elite diving team also got to examine, with excellent visibility, the fascinating aquatic life found around grounded icebergs.
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