Mistake nearly kills free diver

Guillaume Nery underwater photograph

French champion in drowning scare as he blacks out when organiser error made dive much deeper than expected

A 10-METRE mistake by organisers nearly killed French free diving champion Guillaume Néry as he dived much deeper than expected.

His guide line on the dive off Cyprus had been set to 139metres rather than the 129m world record depth he was aiming for and he blacked out and nearly drowned as he came to the surface.

Néry told dive website deeperblue.com “I have had a bad squeeze but luckily I made it back. I did black out at around 15m. It was long before I came back around. It was a close call…”

Organisers at the AIDA Individual Depth Championships Pre-Competition in Limassol have apologised for the mistake and announced measures to ensure it never happens again. They said a marker tape was missing.
Le champion d'#apnée @guillaumenery bat le record du monde malgré lui. Les détails ici http://t.co/V9TxxAl5oj pic.twitter.com/UyVUGcai8k— @F3Provence (@France3Provence) September 11, 2015

It is feared Néry may be forced out of this weekend’s World Championships and the 139m dive cannot even be claimed as a new record as the blacked out on the ascent.

His publicist, Agathe Schrameck, told journalists he had fluid on his lung, adding: “He had the scare of his life.”

Néry later told France Info: “I thought it was a bit long, but it’s very difficult to think that there could be any error in a world record attempt with all the checking that demands. When I came to I looked at the dive computers and I was stunned when I saw the depth figures.”

The organisers said the guide line had been lowered too quickly, shallower depth indicators were not noted and that the tape at 130m was missing so the depth was indicated wrongly.

Aux Mondiaux d’apnée, Guillaume Néry victime d’une erreur de mesure http://t.co/6NSUnk0By0 pic.twitter.com/6dNIItL6wt— Le Monde (@lemondefr) September 10, 2015

This short video by underwater cameraman Julie Gautier shows Guillaume Néry on a 2010 “base jump” dive into Dean’s Blue Hole, a famous site in the Bahamas.

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