Terrorists and Scuba?

By: Melissa Reynolds
By: Melissa Reynolds

Kathy's Scuba in Harrisonburg DID get a call from the FBI. They certify about 150 people a year. Not as many as a seaside shop, but enough to cause concern.

The Clancey's have been diving all over the world.

"Maybe it's more where haven't I been, Pallo, South Pacific, Australia, a lot of Caribbean trips," Kathy Clancey says.

They've been teaching people to dive for almost 20 years...and were surprised when the FBI gave them a ring.

"They wanted to know who we had trained of possible Mid-Eastern descent or anybody we might have trained who could become a potential terrorist and I don't think we have done any of that," Kathy says.

Most of their classes just teach the basics.

"How to use the equipment, how to properly breathe underwater and how not to hurt themselves," Kathy says.

Paul says the government needs to do more than just find out who's certified.

"That is a start, but you've got to combine a name with some of the technology that can be purchased the technology is not a very large market the items being fairly expensive and notable," Paul Clancey says.

He says you'd need something to help with visibility, strong currents and thermal extremes.

"It's kinda like space you've gotta have the technology to go there the more technology you have the more able you are to accomplish your objective," Paul says.

So, is it feasible this could be the terrorist's next plan of attack?

"I don't think the average diver has the ability to do what would need to be done-the training is out there, but it would need to be through the military or commercial," Kathy says.

Kathy's Scuba's not alone. FBI agents have contacted 1,200 dive shops, checking customer names from as far back as three years.

50 North Main Street Harrisonburg, VA 22801 540-433-9191 - Switchboard 540-433- 4028 - Fax 540-433-2700 - News Fax

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