PLR 20-028 - Scuba Diving Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life
A Staff Sergeant assigned to Okinawa, Japan, died in a scuba diving mishap 2 February 2020 at 0959 local. The Soldier was reportedly handing the ship’s captain his oxygen tanks when he began yelling and submerged below the water. The Japanese coast guard was notified to conduct the recovery and located the Soldier’s body the following day.
Since FY16, the Army has lost an average of 15 Soldiers a year to off-duty Personal Injury Other (PIO) mishaps. This was the first fatal PIO water-related mishap in FY20 compared to two PIO water-related fatalities this time last year. If history teaches any lessons, expect the number of PIO water mishaps to rise with the spring and summer temperatures. Now is the time for leaders to emphasize safety during off-duty water activities.