No Safe Harbor: The Tragedy of the Dive Ship Wave Dancer by Joe Burnworth
On October 8, 2001, the 120-foot luxury live-aboard dive yachts Wave Dancer and Aggressor III, both carrying members of the Richmond Dive Club, were secured to a concrete dock in southern Belize when Hurricane Iris struck. The last boat to slip into the harbor for safety, the Wave Dancer, stuck out halfway into the channel, unable to find more room at the crowded dock. The category four hurricane, with winds of 140 mph and a storm surge of fourteen feet, ripped the Wave Dancer from its cleats, tossing it like a toy across the lagoon. When the storm subsided an hour later, 20 of the boat’s 28 occupants were dead. The investigation into the tragedy the worst in the history of recreational diving revealed that the boat’s owner and captain had ignored storm warnings and needlessly endangered the lives of their passengers and crew.
In a vivid indictment of maritime irresponsibility, author Joe Burnworth a passenger on the Aggressor III dramatically recounts the events leading up to the Wave Dancer's capsizing, the rescue and recovery attempts, and the devastating aftermath.