There has been seven fatalities this year alone along the coast of Marin, Sonoma, and Mendocino counties in search of the slimy delicacy known as an abalone. California Journal Dying for abalone goes through the extreme dangers and thrills of diving for abalone. Abalone divers will get thrown around into rocks, caught up in kelp or sea weeds, and even have heart attacks. According to Jerry Kashiwada, “People don’t appreciating how rough the water is. It may look calm between wave sets, and that can fool them,” or “I think people underestimate the amount of exertion that it takes to do the diving”
There may only be 18 abalone taken annually. Abalone is one of the most strictly regulated edible. Although it is so strictly regulated more than 250,000 get taken illegally every year. Some of the laws on diving for abalone is you can not have more than 3 abalone in your possession at any time, you must tag the abalone with the date and location as soon as you get out of the water, and divers can’t use air tanks only a mask and snorkel.
The rest of the article goes on to say that it is very dangerous even before stepping foot in the water. Divers often have to traverse steep and unstable terrain just to get down to the water. They go through all of this terrain with around 20 pounds of weights, flippers. A tube, and all other diving equipment.