What Makes a Diving Project Successful?

The year was 1911 in Summerland, California. There were approximately twelve wharves extending from the Summerland beach heading offshore; each wharf had at least twenty oil wells drilled through it. A structural problem arose and someone was needed to go underwater to repair it – Albert Christie arrived on the scene. An entrepreneur and inventor outfitted with no manufactured dive gear, Mr. Christie designed and built his dive equipment, then successfully made the dive and the wharf repairs. This was the first time a diver had any known contact with the oil industry.  Fast forward to 1938 – Superior Oil’s Creole Field in the Gulf of Mexico.  A construction barge had sunk and Superior Oil hired W. Horace Williams Construction Company to salvage it. They, in turn, hired Al Warriner, a mechanical engineer, to build the equipment necessary to perform the diving support during the salvage. This was the first known use of a diver in the oil patch in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM).

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