Above: Moat Creek Beach

A 57-year old man from Oakland is still missing after 2 days of searching by rescuers. The man, who was diving for abalone in rough conditions on Monday near Moat Creek Beach in Point Arena, was identified as Oakland resident David Tan Le, 57.

A search for the diver was initially launched Monday morning when officials received a 911 call. The man, who had been apparently diving with friends and family, never resurfaced after diving around 9am. The search was suspended at the end the day on Tuesday due to rough conditions.

Redwood Coast Volunteer Fire Department, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies and Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue volunteers searched for the man until darkness set in Monday evening. The waters were too rough for divers to enter, with waves up to 10 feet tall reported, so the Coast Guard sent a helicopter to search from the air, Stefani said.

With rough diving conditions reported in the area, three other people were also rescued from the shoreline and cliffs along the Mendocino coast on Monday, according to the Coast Guard. The Mendocino Coast was also crowded with many taking advantage of low tides to pick abalone.

Rescuers continued with a diving search early Tuesday morning, although search helicopters were not launched once again due to foggy conditions.

The Mendocino Fire Department has reportedly launched seven boat rescues since April 1, when abalone season began.


Abalone diving is a very strenuous activity and should only be done in ideal conditions, by divers who are very physically fit and properly trained for the activity.