Nautilus LifeLine Testimonials

Nautilus LifeLine is committed to helping save lives. Over 38 people have written to us letting us know how they've been assisted by a LifeLine.  Don't just take it from us, check out what our friends and customers have to say!

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'In a current you’re like a leaf in the sea'

It has been the experience of your correspondent, and that of many others in the past, that safety in diving doesn’t sell. Just as car buyers offered the choice between an entertainment system or more airbags will choose the former, divers are just the same. They know bad things will never happen to them so have no inclination to spend on emergency safety gear. One of diving’s great risks is being swept away. As one old hand observed ‘In a current you’re like a leaf in the sea’. And if it’s a bad day and seas are up and the current’s running things rapidly get very hairy.

Recently four of us went out on a less than perfect day to dive a wreck about half a mile offshore in 51 metres. Breeze was 15 knots gusting 18 and blowing from the shore, current about one knot heading south. The other three were all breather divers and planning to spend 30-40 minutes on the bottom with a run-time of roughly 1hr 40 min total. I was going to dive open circuit for a lesser bottom time but, looking at the wind, sea state and current, opted to boat for the others. Two had scooters. One, let’s call him Jeff, scootered away from the wreck after a short time on the bottom, and realising he was lost did a blue-water bag-ascent. His irresponsible mates carried on their original plan, disregarding the disappearance of their erstwhile buddy.

The wind speed picked up to 25 knots, gusting 30 plus with the sea state deteriorating. Jeff surfaces way down current after a bag deco, his safety sausage blows flat in the breeze and his scooter is only powerful enough to hold station in the current, not to make headway back towards the boat and I’m not keeping a sharp lookout this early in the dive plan. He’s smart enough to know he’s in trouble and cool enough to look for assistance. By now the deteriorating conditions send recreational fishos in their runabouts back to shelter. Two pass by in Jeff’s vicinity but are oblivious to his efforts to attract them. The third almost runs him over before he sees Jeff and stops to take him on board. Meanwhile I know nothing.

I see from my chartplotter the other two miscreants have pulled the anchor so I lay out a sea-anchor to stop a drift to New Zealand while these guys do their hour long deco. First one back on board has the temerity to ask ‘Where’s Jeff?’ I think his ears are still ringing from the abuse I heaped on him for not aborting the dive when one of the party disappeared. Then the search was on. Sixty minutes of pounding through heavy seas, working out how far a diver would have drifted in an hour and a half, searching likely drift patterns and half expecting to find a body.

I had alerted Marine Rescue earlier, first of all with a heads-up when the divers were down and the weather was going bad and then again when the search started. Our stress ended on getting a VHF call from Rescue to say our missing diver was on the boat-ramp jetty back in Botany Bay. He alighted from his rescuer’s boat just as the Marine search vessel was preparing to leave the same jetty to look for him.

All three of these characters, having learned a first-hand lesson of how bad things can get when conditions turn nasty, went out the same day and bought a Nautilus Lifeline submersible GPS/VHF radios, with two others of my regular diving mates following their example. Nothing like a bit of sphincter puckering to bring reality home and to encourage investing in a life saving device.

From Dive New Zealand & Dive Pacific A/M 2012 Issue #129.

Reasons why I always bring my Lifeline

The Maldives, Truk, Palau, Grand Cayman, Komodo, next Raja Ampat, I am a trip leader for the Pan Aqua dive shop in New York, and an underwater photojournalist. These days I don’t leave home for any those places without my Lifeline, and I encourage all my travellers to add a Lifeline to their dive gear.

Why? Because !#$% happens! You’ve been there: the current that picks up and starts to move you off dive site, the small boat entry in the wrong place and now you’re in a ball of jacks being fed on by Bronze whalers not on the planned dive site and you and your dive group had best get out of there quickly, the sunset dive that left two divers unaccounted for, and that ripping current just under the surface in the Solomon’s that was going to take you who knows where... these are the remembered reasons why I always bring my Lifeline and strongly encourage those traveling with me to get their own. Then there’s always the added benefit of talking to each other.

Fortunately I haven’t had any of those problems recently, but next time they happen, I and my dive group will be prepared and we won’t be floating alone on a small piece of some remote ocean wondering when the dive boat will miss us and come looking. This time our Lifeline is our safety net.


Maria Hults
Photojournalist
Adventure Travel Leader
Beneath the Sea Vp
Woman Divers Hall of Fame member (2000)

The only radio viable for my use

I spend a large amount of time playing on jet skis in heavy surf but still require a radio for launch, beach, and emergency. I enjoy rough heavy seas and normally break about five or six radios a year. I was mailed a brochure of the LifeLine from Killerdeals in SA. I had a look at the radio and believed that it was the only radio viable for my use, and that has proved correct.

In SA most of the ski boat launch sites require a 29 MHz but that is slowly changing as the 29 MHz hand held units currently available are absolutely useless for our application. All jet ski skippers, whether they fish or play, are having issues with the 29 and as a result the clubs are starting to allow VHF as well.

I believe that there is a good market for a strong waterproof VHF – I attach it to my vest, if I am thrown from the ski and the ski is washed onto rocks at least I have a radio in hand. It's a great product - so far no problems at all. If you consider the price it's very cheap compared to five radios a year that break up on landing big jumps. The radio being attached to my vest is isolated from the impact and vibration of the ski which works well.

The LifeLine radio is worth every penny

My buddy and I were diving in Key Largo for a few days. On day two our regular boat op was not doing a night dive and we wanted one, so we scheduled with a different smaller op. The smaller op seemed well run, and was happy to take us and two other divers out on an Atlantic reef a little over a mile offshore for a night dive!

It was our second night dive this trip, and we still managed to make a few jokes about the movie “Open Water” on the ride out to the dive site. After all the usual formalities, the buddy pairs got in the water. We had a great dive, saw squid, lots of tropical fish, rays, and eels. There was a fairly strong current across the reef, and it took some focus on navigation to stay near the boat.

At the end of the dive, we surfaced about 100’ away from the boat; which I thought was pretty good. Unfortunately we surfaced just in time to hear him fire up the engines and drive off! My first thought was that another boat had come to the area while we were diving and we surfaced by the wrong boat; but after a moment of looking around I couldn’t see any lights other than on shore a long way off. With the current, it would have been an extremely difficult swim – if we’d have made it at all.

My buddy started to get upset, and that conversation about the movie flashed back into my mind. Fortunately, I had an insurance policy on a D-Ring. I fired up my LifeLine radio and hailed the boat. We weren’t in the water long before he came and got us and we were safely back on board. It turns out the dive team had not been paying as much attention and had got quite far from the boat. The captain saw their SMB and lights when they surfaced, and went to rescue the distressed divers.

The peace of mind brought by knowing I had a way to help save myself instantly made the radio worth every penny. Since my GoPro camera was attached to my dive lights, I even have a photo of the radio actually being used to make the call.

You just saved my life.

Thank you guys! You just saved my life. $299.99 was the most important
investment I ever made! Because it saved my life. How small can the price
of a life be? Just $299.99.

Here is my story. I think I am the first buyer who used Nautilus LifeLine in 18 hours right after purchase.

Yesterday I got a call from our dive center, "Sea Dogs", New Smyrna Beach, FL. They offered me a spear fishing trip for next morning at the reef. I couldn't miss this trip. I am new in spear fishing, but I have 10 years of experience just in regular diving. I thought the current could be strong and it's time to buy your radio. At the last minute before shop closed I bought it at Divers Direct.

On the next morning during our first dive I had gone too far from the boat and
when I raised to surface I didn't see any boat. Then I saw several boats,
but they were too far from me - about 1-1.5 miles. I started calling them. After 2
hours one boat picked me up. I had drifted 3.5 miles away.

Thank you guys!

Surfer's peace of mind

I've been surfing for 3 years and I LOVE surfing in the winter (I know, crazy right?). It gets pretty cold and lonely off the wild coast of Maryland in the winter time and we really try to create a buddy system for safety reasons. Based on individual demands and schedules, it's not always possible to surf with a friend. When searching in the Internet, the advice you find for safety for solo surfing is, 'don't surf alone.' NICE! Well, that's not always possible and if you are yearning for hitting the water, some of us crazies will go it alone regardless.

I was fortunate enough to find the Lifeline so that I can still surf and know that I'm literally a click away from help if I'm in trouble. This gives me and my family the peace of mind I need to hit the water with a surfer's Lifeline!

We now own the Nautilus Lifeline. I will never dive without one.

Long story short - due to deteriorating weather conditions on the surface during a dive in Fiji, our boat captain lost myself, my wife, and our two dive masters in open water for about an hour.

After multiple unsuccessful attempts to signal using a safety sausage and whistle, we waited for the cloud ceiling to lift. This photo is our rescue by a Zodiac from a live aboard that was in the area. After this experience, we now own the Nautilus Lifeline. I will never dive without one.

Thanks for making such a great product.

Photo Credit: Cathy Hebrlee

The LifeLine not only saved our bacon, but saved our trip.

On a recent dive we were hot dropping a wreck in 240'. The current was ripping like it always is there. We missed the wreck and by the time we came up after about 12 min. of deco the boat had lost track of us. We had blown SMBs quickly, but not quick enough. One of the other divers said "We're screwed, the boat still thinks we are on the wreck". I responded "No we are not screwed" I took out my Nautilus LifeLine and let the boat captain know we bounced, and our GPS position.

We soon saw the boat and talked them right over to us. We got right back on the boat, and decided that we would try for the wreck again, and this time we made it. The Nautilus not only saved our bacon, but saved our trip. You can't do that with an EPIRB.

In addition the digitally encoded GPS/distress signal was picked up instantly by Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville, and we where 30 nautical miles east from Port Canaveral. I believe that the other divers as well as the boat captain will be picking a Nautilus up in the near future.

Keeping the situation calm

Mike,

Thought I’d pass along my first dive trip wearing the Lifeline you sent me. Went out last week to Nassau with a small group and the weather was borderline at best. There was about fourteen folks on the boat in addition to my group of four. They all asked about the LifeLine and of course me being me, I took them all through it. I got the reaction that I expected. Great device for Cocos or Galapagos but sure didn’t need it in Nassau.

On the second dive of the second day, our group was allowed to go off the wall while the rest of the less experienced divers stayed on a wreck up top. When we got to the wall the current increased dramatically so we turned into the current and went up the wall as best we could until we got to the end of the reef where it turned to sand. We turned to go over the reef and back to the boat when the already strong current went to a unmanageable current. There was no way to battle the current and no matter how hard you kicked the best you could do was maintain your position. Being in about 50 foot of water I knew that we would have to go up to do our safety stop and would be taken out to sea away from the boat.

Normally the situation would have put a great deal of concern on what to expect. I knew that if that LifeLine had not been with me, I would have been dealing with stress that could have turned to panic, if not for me for someone in my group. However, I knew that no matter where we surfaced we had no problem. It gave me the focus to concentrate on keeping the situation calm. Unlike all the other folks on the boat, I never had a concern that everything was anything but just fine!

Thanks again for sending it to me. All the other divers on that boat understand why having LifeLine with them no matter where they are diving was something they should have!

All the best,