Man dies trying to set freediving record
BAHAMAS — A New York man trying to set a free diving record died Sunday after he surfaced from a depth of more than 200 feet.
Nicholas Mevoli, a 32-year-old from Brooklyn, hoped to reach 72 meters (236 feet) with one breath of oxygen and without the assistance of fins.
When he surfaced, he flashed the OK sign and then lost consciousness 30 seconds later, organizers said.
Mevoli was going for a record at Dean’s Blue Hole in the Bahamas. At 202 meters (663 feet), it is considered the world’s deepest blue hole in seawater.
The 10-day competition brought together 56 divers from 21 countries who took part in a variety of events.
Vertical Blue, which puts on the annual event, said it was trying to figure out what happened.
“Competition freediving has an enviable safety record but the sport can never be risk-free, something understood by all freedivers,” it said in a statement.
In freediving, divers plunge to depths and resurface using a single breath, shunning breathing equipments such as oxygen tanks.