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 Photographing Wrecks

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A diver explores the fuselage of the Betty Bomber in Chuuk Lagoon 

How can we dive wrecks ethically? 

We should view wrecks like underwater museums, the artefacts are there for all of us to enjoy and view but like a museum we should never handle, pose with or move them. 

The idea of taking any artefact, no matter how small is simply immoral, these items are the legacy of a nation and should never be stolen and if you take one that’s exactly what you are doing, it's wrong and unethical. 

When it comes to the issue of remains, it's quite simple. If it were your relative how would you act? Remains should never be handled, moved, or posed. It's extremely unethical to handle human remains. There’s just never an excuse to pick up a human remain. 


An ammunition crates inside the wreck of the Sankisan Maru in Chuuk Lagoon


Cases of beer bottles still neatly stacked in the forward cargo hold of the Rio De Janeiro Maru,  Chuuk Lagoon

Please do not ask dive guides in destinations such as Chuuk Lagoon to show you human remains. It only encourages the practice of hiding skulls to be brought out for paying divers, which sadly does happen

If a guide does show you a remain, tell him no and when privacy permits, explain politely that they are human remains and represent a young sailor who died and the remains should be allowed to rest in peace. 

As in all diving before we undertake the venture we should work to perfect our skills. Buoyancy is a skill we should all strive to perfect, especially before we decide to undertake photography or videography. 


A diver inspects the stern telegraph and speaking tube on the Shinkoku Maru, Chuuk Lagoon 

Ethical dive practices are simple common-sense rules and regulations. Simply put if you think it may be wrong then it probably is. Imagine the person you love the most and then imagine those remains are them…act accordingly.

As for the artefacts, others travel to wreck diving destinations worldwide to see these same artefacts, so imagine you arriving to find they have been moved and or stolen. You came to see them, the diver coming next week, next month, or next year wants to see them as well. 

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A gas mask deep inside the Fujikawa Maru in Chuuk Lagoon

Artifacts on kensho

A newspaper and a bowl on the Kensho Maru in Chuuk Lagoon

Thanks for taking the time to review these tips and it is my hope that by doing so that we together can help preserve the history and sacrifice for generations to come. 

Gregory Piper

 Insta logoweb



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