Deadly Diving

A 37-year-old Portuguese tourist lost his life after diving into the sea from a cliff in the Paseo de los Carbineros area in Nerja.

The accident occurred around midday on Thursday the 24th of February, when the man, who was in the company of family and friends, decided that he would dive head first into the sea from a low rocky outcrop, ignorant of the fact that the water is only 1.5m deep at the point where he chose dive in. Jumping as he did from a height of five metres, the decision proved fatal. The lack of visibility caused by the choppy state of the water, denied the bathers a clear view of the depth of the water.

It was almost certainly the decision to dive head first as opposed to feet first that cost him his life, rather than the actual spot, because both his uncle and brother jumped from the same place and at the same time… but feet first.

The site of the tragedy was between the Carabeo and Calahonda beaches, which are linked by a pedestrian walkway, which has been closed to the public for at least eight years because it is in a state of ill repair and the danger of falling rocks from the cliffs above.

Straight away, a unit of the Policía Local arrived as well as an ambulance sent by Andalusian emergency service, 112. There was nothing they could do for the man, however, owing to the damage done to his neck – he had broken it.

Owing to the lack of accessibility to vehicles the Protección Civil had to transport the body in a small launch to a point (El Playazo) where a waiting hearse was standing by to take the body to the morgue, where the coroner issued the necessary death certificate.

Traumatised family members had to be treated for shock at the scene of the accident.

Thanks to the abrupt coastline of Nerja and Maro (Los Acantillados de Maro y Cerro Gordo) many bathers are tempted to dive from these elevated points. However, despite the fact that the Paseo de los Carabineros has been closed to the public since 2003, after heavy rains caused rock falls, bathers still use it.

The Town Hall of Nerja has repeatedly requested that the coastal authorities re-open the paseo after stabilizing the rocks above and behind it, but to date, nothing has been done and this emblematic walkway remains closed to the public.

(News: Nerja, Costa del Sol, Malaga, Andalucia)

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