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Last Updated: Friday, 3 August 2007, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
Wreck safety probe after deaths
Boats searching around the wreck area
Boats in the area joined the search after a Mayday signal was broadcast
The safety of a wreck serving as an artificial diving reef has come under scrutiny following the deaths of two experienced divers at the Cornish site.

The bodies of David White and Kaye Moss, from Gloucestershire, were recovered on Thursday after a dive to the Scylla wreck in Whitsand Bay.

Police said they were examining whether the wreck was now suitable for divers.

The National Marine Aquarium, which was involved in its sinking, said it was still safe for trained divers.

HMS Scylla was scuttled off Whitsand Bay in 2004 to create Europe's first artificial diving reef.

David White, 42, from Rodborough, and Kaye Moss, 43, from Cam, had gone to explore the wreck on board the crewed Maid Maggie boat.

Parts of the Scylla may need to be looked at or in fact whether the Scylla itself is still to be considered a safe dive
Det Sgt Paul Cashman

A major air and sea search began when they failed to resurface and their air supplies were due to run out.

Police said their bodies were found inside the wreck by another group of divers who helped in the search. The deaths are not believed to be suspicious.

Both were experienced divers and David White had previously dived at the Scylla.

Artificial reef

Police have seized the pair's personal equipment and officers will try to establish a timeline to find out when they got into difficulty.

A dive computer will be examined which shows how much air was in their tanks and their breathing rate.

The Health and Safety Executive has been informed and post-mortem examinations were carried out on Friday.

The Scylla wreck off Whitsand Bay
Police: "The wider picture will need to be looked at."

Scylla, an ex-Royal Navy warship, was bought by the National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth in 2004 with 200,000 provided by the South West Regional Development Agency.

Thousands of divers have since visited the wreck.

The aquarium said those involved in the sinking of the Scylla do not have any legal responsibility for its safety but said they did everything they could to prevent accidents.

Det Sgt Paul Cashman, who is leading the police investigation, said: "The wider picture will need to be looked at.

"Parts of the Scylla may need to be looked at or in fact whether the Scylla itself is still to be considered a safe dive or whether certain levels of competencies need to be addressed if you are being considered safe to dive."

Paul Cox, manager of the National Marine Aquarium, which monitors the wreck's reef, said it was safe for people who had undergone proper training but urged divers to look after themselves.

"We have recommendations on our website for divers using the wreck which stress the need for a high level of diver training for orientation.

"The diving operations know what they are doing, they know what recommendations to place.

"There are no plans in place to change anything."

The aquarium says the Scylla is safe

Dead Scylla wreck divers named
03 Aug 07 |  Cornwall
Divers' bodies found on shipwreck
02 Aug 07 |  Cornwall
Missing diver now presumed dead
22 May 05 |  Cornwall
Warship scuttled in Cornish bay
27 Mar 04 |  Cornwall
Safety concerns for scuttled ship
20 Jul 04 |  Cornwall

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