Updated 03/14/2013 07:41 PM
Bronx Scuba Instructor Goes Underwater To Help Sandy Cleanup
Businesses that lie along the shores and rely on the water are still suffering from the effects of Hurricane Sandy, but one City Island man's skills in the water helped cushion the blow of slow business while allowing him to help others get back on their feet. NY1's Erin Clarke filed the following report.
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Mike Carew practically grew up in the waters of City Island.
"Started swimming and snorkeling and spearfishing at an early age, and as soon as I was old enough to take scuba lessons, I went and I signed up and took scuba lessons," he said.
So it was no surprise that he ended up diving for a living.
For about 10 years, Carew was a New York City Police diver. He also gave lessons on the side, eventually acquiring the business that is now Captain Mike's Diving. In retirement, he runs it full time.
But after Hurricane Sandy, Carew wasn't exactly seeing a high demand for recreational activities like diving.
"Divers that normally were going to go out, their boats were lost, or, you know, where we wanted to run charters, now where are you going to run the boat?" he said. "How do you get the passengers down to the boat safely?"
Work, though, came in a different way.
There was, and still is in some cases, a need for people who aren't afraid to venture below the water's surface. After the storm, those skills came in handy for Carew. He was called upon to help out at marinas across the tri-state area.
"I had insurance companies also calling me going to look for boats," he said. "I had individuals calling me needing to retrieve items off their boats that were sunk."
For many marina owners, the work Carew and his team did inspecting piers and supporting structures determined how they could go about repairing and rebuilding.
"We had to check for undermining," he said. "That's the bottom getting washed out from underneath. That usually happens at the corners of the structure, which now creates weight on that corner. It shifts. It falls."
Carew said the money wasn't much, but it helped him out a bit. He's now hoping the local marinas he helped can get back up and running in time for the upcoming boating season, because in the end, his business, in part, depends on theirs.