Police in Lorengau is warning locals to be extra careful when diving for sea cucumbers in Manus province. This follows an increase in reported deaths and missing persons as a result of harvesting sea cucumbers.
Manus police commander Chief Inspector David Yapu, said three deaths have been reported since August 2020.
“ Last Wednesday (7th October 2020) four men from Baluan Island went diving for sea cucumber near Sibisa and Lou Islands, a shark attacked one of them and completely chopped off his head. His body was found floating at sea later,” Yapu said.
On 5th October a 41-year-old man from Patu village in the Pobuma LLG went diving for sea cucumber, two days later his lifeless body was found floating between Patu and Tawi Islands. In August, another man from Koroji went diving for sea cucumber, he also didn’t return home and his body was later found at sea.
Following these reports, PPC Yapu said whilst the harvest of sea cucumber brings in more money for locals, they need to be extra careful while diving for sea cucumbers.