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La Jolla Man Dies During Ocean Dive

October 11, 1987

A La Jolla diver was pronounced dead early Saturday after his body, entangled in a line from a lobster trap off Bird Rock, was retrieved from the water, authorities said.

San Diego City Lifeguard Service reported receiving a 911 call at 8:50 a.m. from a diver, who said his diving "buddy" was last seen at 7:15 a.m. with only 10 to 15 minutes of air left in his tank, according to Lifeguard Sgt. Brant Bass.

San Diego Harbor Patrol, a lifeguard vessel and a San Diego County sheriff's helicopter crew began the search after a lobster fisherman pulled up a trap and discovered the victim's body entangled in the line.

The quarter-inch line connecting the trap to a marker buoy on the surface was wrapped around the diver's neck and chest, Bass said.

The victim was pronounced dead on the scene.

Authorities said the man had been with two other divers but the trio separated after entering the water.

The victims's name was not released, pending notification of relatives.

Bass cautioned divers and swimmers, saying it is lobster season and traps are scattered along the coast.

Traps can be identified on the surface as buoys made of Styrofoam, with the fisherman's license imprinted on it. Lobstermen use personal color schemes to identify their traps.

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