Home at last, oddly reflective, and thankful…

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

by Neal Pollock – TeckDiver Publishing & Training

I arrived home early on Tuesday morning, after a month on the road. Bags filled with memories of a wonderful expedition that had its challenges, but which has already produced some positive results.

Last dive of the mine quest expedition
Steve and Cas conducted the final cleanup dive on the last day of work in the Bell Island Mine.

On Wednesday, a friend/colleague sent an email congratulating the #Minequest team on the “successful conclusion” of our project. I thanked her for the thought but pointed out that the project is far from concluded… in reality, it has just started. What we wrapped up last week was simply one small aspect of a rather large master plan… getting a circuit marked surveys and ready for visiting divers to follow.

What begins for the team now, having finished our underwater work (for the time-being), is to spread the word about the #bellislandmine and the historical significance or it and the four WWII wrecks sitting on the floor of the Tickle just a few kilometers from the mine entrance.

TED ED jill Heinerth
Jill Heinerth spearheading TED ED outreach

Another aspect is the ongoing educational commitments made on behalf of the project. Several members of the team toured local schools with a “show ‘n’ tell” immediately following the wrap in the mine. The reception from kids was “awesome” literally

Jill Heinerth also spearheaded a TED ED outreach bringing kids from around the globe into direct contact with explorers.

Stay tuned for more on this score as the year rolls on.

One other ongoing aspect is the impact made on divers participating in decompression research conducted during the project #drnealpollock #DAN #diveresearch. Several of the team, all experienced technical divers, and many teaching advanced decompression techniques, left Bell Island with a slightly altered, perhaps more circumspect view of #divesafety and the vagaries of decompression stress thanks to Dr. Neal Pollock and his research associate, Stefanie Martina from Divers Alert Network.

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