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Watch this video of Shannon’s dropped cell phone recovered from Hicks Lake in Lacey, WA.
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Shannon called me sharing that she had just dropped her cell phone in to Hicks Lake. She was with her friend Karen enjoying a day of paddle boarding when this incident took place. Shannon fell off her paddle board into the lake. Karen’s dog then jumped from one paddle board to the the other to help Shannon. Karen then also fell of her board and her dog then jumped back to Karen’s board. In all the commotion Shannon’s iPhone 11 fell off her board into the lake and down it went!
Shannon told me a few key points of information during our pone interview. Her iPhone 11 was not backed up so it was important to recover it. The phone was inside one of those clear PVC plastic phone bags with a clip on the top and a neck lanyard. She could not see the bottom of the lake where the phone dropped however they were relatively close to shore. Fortunately the drop zone took place next to a residential buoys so there was a solid land mark to work from. She told me there was about three white jug buoys. However the one they were closest to had a big handle and no label or printing any longer on the container.
After hearing all this I asked a slew of inquisitive questions to aid in the efficiency of my search. I said if the buoy is the center of the clock and shore is at 6 o’clock what bearing would you say the drop zone is from the buoy. She thought about it and told me 11 o’clock seemed to be most accurate.
Due Shannon’s work schedules she sent her friend Karen to meet me on site who also witnessed this whole event take place. I asked the same clock bearing question to her without any prompting and after a bit of though she also confidently stated 11 o’clock. This was reassuring to me as viable intel to work.
Having my dive scooter greatly improve my efficiencies on this dive to motor over to the buoys to start my dive search. When I arrived at the first buoy I could not see any of the others from my low position in the water. I noticed a white jug with a handle and no printing on the side so I felt confident I was at the “drop zone” and proceeded with my first dive. I worked the area with a max operating depth of 15’. After a bit of time using visual inspection, medal detection and a bit of scooter searching I was perplexed after 40 minutes of work. I surfaced to clear my mind for a quick reset when it occurred to me I had possibly been searching the wrong buoy. I then inspected the buoy I just dove and the back side of the container still had a label on it. At this point I also remembered her telling me her buoy was fairly close to shore.
I scootered a short distance and could just make out the second white jug buoy. When I got up to the container and fully inspected it more carefully this time I confirmed this one was correct as it was completely free of all writing and labels. This buoy as also much closer to the shore as described during our phone interview. The placement of these buoys were not visible from my shore entry point and guarded by private property. Because of this I was not able to have anyone directly point the buoy out to me from shore. At this point my confidence level was boosted as I ascended down on my second dive effort to search for her phone.
This time on my second dive with a MOD of 13’ I was efficiently rewarded with the phone recovery via a simple visual search. It paid to ask what orientation from the buoy they remembered. Based on this I was able to make a simple swim out towards the 11 o’clock bearing and quickly located her lost phone at 11 feet concluding this dive within 5 minutes.
Remember the value of any recovery effort is not in how long a search takes if only a few minutes or a few revisits to the site. The value is in finding a recovery specialist that can provide a portfolio of proven skills for the requirement of your search needs. The time spent interviewing properly, travel, gear setup and tear down, arriving with the proper gear for the job and having a proper experience mindset for a detail relentless search effort is what you are lookin for in a recovery specialist. Fortunately you have options and no better place to review your opportunities than TheRingFinders.com. This amazing directly listing allows experienced recovery specialist across the country to showcase their unique skill sets and how they can be of service to you.
When I located her phone on the lake floor it was still sealed inside the dry bag and still look dry. There was no way at the surface of the water at my dive float was I willing to even sneak a peak at the phone so I left the bag sealed up until I reached the shore.
The good news was after five days as a shallow eleven feet the new phone bag she had just purchased did its job in keeping her phone dry!
Continue to ask a lot of detailed investigative questions and take good notes, they often pay great dividends in the outcome of any search. What I will try to do moving forward especially when the search is a day or more past the initial interview is to reread carefully through my notes before the search effort so the details are fresh in my mind. Another take way for all of us when things are not adding up, stop beating up the same areas already searched. Take a moment to pause and reconsider the information provided and new information gained by what search efforts you have made to this point. Fortunately my assessment that I had been diving the wrong zone came to me and I was able to adjust my search effort for the successful recovery of the lost phone. I also had a great appreciation for having the appropriate gear for the job. Even though they said it was a short swim to the buoy it would have been much more taxing on my energy level if I had to free swim the whole operation towing my dive float and search gear along. With the aid of my dive scooter I was able to conserve my energy to maintain a safe dive profile and effectively operate with many details on my mind throughout the whole operation.
Watch my video to see first hand the recovery of this dropped phone in the lake even after a slight misdirection on my part we still found success before the end of the day.
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If you lost an item of value reach out to me directly for a quick chat so I can formulate a recovery plan for you!