It had been well-planned – a deep dive for four experienced scuba diving teachers. But halfway through the session, two compressed air tanks ran out, setting off a catastrophic chain of events.
The sky was blue over Cyprus. It was a rare day off for friends Rich, Paul, Emily and Andy and they decided to take advantage of the crystal blue water and search for nudibranchs, a type of ocean slug.
They launched a boat from the shore, anchored it and dived into the sea one-by-one, use their fins to propel themselves downwards into the deeper, darker, water.
They carried on to depth of 40m – 10 m deeper than the instructors would take their clients.
They were young and wanted to “push the limits”, Rich Osborn, then 21, admits. But they were experienced and well-practised at this level.