Carl Massey - In Troubled Waters - by Ginge Fullen
Carl Massey - Intro
In troubled waters -– One step forward
Carl’s career as a Clearance Diver spanned the Cold War, the Northern Ireland Troubles and the Falklands’ Conflict, but that is only part of his story. First becoming a Shallow Water Diver in the early 60's he also did one of the early Free-Swimming Courses (the fore runner of the Ship’s Diver course) with 'SCUBA' (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) using compressed air which the Navy called SABA (Swimmers Air Breathing Apparatus). Passing his CDs course in 1964 he had drafts to Bomb Disposal teams and different ships and also took part in experimental diving and explosive trials. Carl spent several years on the Saturation Diving team diving and operating from the Deep Dive Vessel Clansman. He was also one of a few people to do the course on the Atmospheric suit 'Jim' in the early 80's.
Here is a unique story, a story maybe of being at the right place at the wrong time, a story about how very varied the job of a Clearance Diver can be. It’s a career that saw the evolution of numerous different diving equipment. That saw the start and end of Saturation diving in the Royal Navy and traditions such as the rum ration and pets at sea coming to an end. Although our time in the Navy crossed each other’s I never knew Carl before helping him compile this photo book but in getting to know him I get the feeling he was the one to volunteer for everything and always be the one to take that one step forward so to speak.
1991 - Civilian Bomb Disposal job working out in Somalia. The team is walking through an area they were told was cleared of land mines. Bang. Bang. Two explosions ring out. The dust settles and Carl and an ex-Army WO 2 are down. The WO calls to Carl for help. "I can’t" came the reply. "I've not got a leg to stand on". This is Carl Massey’s story 'One step forward' and it’s about a Clearance Diver taking part in history.