The diving season actually started off quite well for ODA, albeit later than we'd like due to the heavy rains this spring. We made our first clean-up dive of 2005 at the end of May, followed by a couple more dives in June with our hardy volunteers. Each expedition yielded many pounds of abandoned traps, line, and other garbage found littering the bottom of our beautiful rocky reefs.
Over the July 4th holiday while most of the nation was making loud noises, ODA was out on the water doing our thing. But we experienced a serious boat problem after making 2 successful dives yielding over 100 pounds of trap debris - The bilge pump malfunctioned allowing seawater to accumulate in the engine compartment to a significant level. In short, the Garibaldi was sinking and our in-board engine was practically submerged! By some miracle and help of the hand pumps, the engine started and the Garibaldi limped back to ramp in Newport Harbor.
Whereas there's no serious damage to the boat and we can easily fix the bilge pump, the starter needs to be replaced along with some other engine parts that received too much exposure to the ocean's salty brine. We are trying to replace the starter ourselves, however, we are having extreme difficulty freeing it from the engine and may have to seek professional (i.e. expensive) help. If anyone out there is a mechanic and/or has a way to help, please contact us ASAP at .
How else can you help? Well, a donation is always welcomed...We need to raise at least $1,000 to properly repair the Garibaldi so we can return to our mission as soon as possible. ODA is a non-profit, grassroots organization supported completely by the generous donations of members and friends like you. We have no paid staff - all the money raised goes to keep the boat running. Please visit our donation page where you can learn more about us, and make an on-line donation with a credit card or a check.
Our new long-sleeved t-shirts were a big hit at the Scuba Show, so please check them out on the website. We'll send a free t-shirt for any donation over $40.
Founder & President
Ocean Defenders Alliance