Yesterday marked the first day Substation Curaçao officially hit the water on Dominica after extensive preparation and triple system checks of both the Curasub and the topside support boat, the “Joniboy”. Bruce Brandt (pilot) and Barbara van Bebber (co-pilot) gave their top-side support crew (Tico Cristiaan & Bryan Horne) the all clear to dive at around 11:45am. The lines were released and the Curasub was on its way to explore the first of many deep-reefs sites on Dominica.The Joniboy would follow the Curasub using a Tracklink Software System connected with GPS/Compass plotting the subs entire course.
The first dive was lead by Dutch and Francois van der Hoeven of STIMACUR – Curacao Maritime Museum. Francois and his group are interested in cultural artifacts that might be found in the Roseau Harbor, which has been in use for about 250 years. On this initial exploratory dive, the team found the area was covered in silt sediment originating from the Roseau River. No historical artifacts were found on this dive because of the extensive silt cover but the team will be out exploring again tomorrow. The group was surprised they found very little garbage, considering Tropical Storm Erika caused a lot of damage to the Dominica coast late last year (August 2015).
The total dive time of this first dive was approximately 4 hours with a maximum depth of 1000 feet.
Stay tuned, there are many more Curasub dives to come, this is just the beginning!