Drowning `kind of pleasant,’ says diving-gear maker

Posted: 04/04/2012 in all marine news

Kent Spencer – 

The first thing a visitor learns about deep diver Phil Nuytten is that he thinks big.

Shortly after being ushered into his nautically themed office in North Vancouver, he explains why the Earth was misnamed.

“We’re the first generation to see the planet from space and realize it should not have been called Earth.

It should have been called Ocean,” says the softly spoken 70-year-old. The renowned inventor is unveiling his latest gear at a U.S. diving convention this weekend in New Jersey.

The Exosuit is a state-of-the art diving suit that looks like something Buzz Lightyear might put on.

Nuytten has a deep-seated relationship with the water that goes far beyond the nuts and bolts of making useful things.

He scoffs at fear of the deep and says the reason is because he “drowned” at the age of 18.

It happened when he was a hotshot spear fisherman taking part in a breath-holding competition.

There was one fellow he wanted to beat. The plan was to free dive 20 metres down, swim 30 metres horizontally, and come back up 20 metres to the surface.

A safety diver stood by on the bottom with an aqualung.

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