Here we were, getting ready for our dive trip to Puerto Rico. We couldn’t have been more excited. This was going to be the 2nd time I would be using our Sea Life DC1400 Duo and the 1st time we would ever be diving in the Caribbean Sea. It was kind of a big deal to us.
After arriving and settling in, I did all the necessary checks (according to page 7 & 8 of the instruction manual) on our camera equipment to make sure that all was well before I jumped into the water.
And we were off. Time to dive Desecheo Island. The excitement level was through the roof. After our buddy check’s and dive briefing, we made our entry and began our descent. The landscape was just breathtaking. The sun was shining through the surface, making the colors of the coral some of the most vivid colors I’ve ever seen. It was so beautiful, I almost forgot to take a picture. Then the unthinkable happened. I brought my SeaLife camera up to my face to take a photo of the landscape and all I see is water floating around the housing. My heart sunk.
I then motioned over to my buddy, Dan, and advised that I would be ascending. We were only 25 feet down, so I made my ascent as quickly as I could without hurting myself. As soon as I got on the boat, I opened the housing, removed the camera, removed the battery, laid it out to dry and continued my dive. I tell you what… Scuba diving knowing that your camera has just let you down, is a terrible feeling. I don’t think I fully enjoyed the diving after that. All I kept thinking about were all the photos I won’t have to post for the world to see. What a bummer.
Now comes the fun part. I get to contact SeaLife to try to get this sorted out. I tried calling their 800#, but it kept ringing busy, so I did the next best thing and tweeted them. Got a response the next day, which I can understand, because it was the weekend.
So, I did what they suggested and called their number. I got through this time and got an agent (who will remain nameless) and explained my situation. So, here’s the deal. I know customer service. I also know that the first thing out of the mouth of someone who is representing a company should never be blame. Instead of being empathetic that a very large wrench has been thrown into our scuba diving vacation, I was told that it was MY fault because “if a SeaLife Camera were to fail, it would be on the first use.”
From March of this year (when we purchased the camera) to up until this phone conversation, I have had a very good impression of SeaLife. It was going downhill fast. I kept my cool and told the representative that I would follow all of the instructions on his email. Send all of the items that were damaged to SeaLife? Got it. I’m responsible for the shipping & packing charges? Got it.
After returning from our trip, I went straight to FedEx, had everything packed and shipped as per SeaLife’s instructions. Forty eight dollars and sixty cents later, my poor little DC 14o0 was on its way to Pioneer Research to get looked at. I guess all we can do right now is sit and wait . . . and hope we didn’t make the wrong decision to purchase a SeaLife camera instead of a GoPro camera.
Stay tuned. I will post an update as soon as I hear something back from SeaLife. Any of you have a SeaLife (or another underwater camera)? Have a similar experience? Share your stories with us!