Bozeman man dies in scuba mishap at Canyon Ferry

A 55-year-old Bozeman man died while scuba diving on Canyon Ferry Reservoir while trying to retrieve a vehicle that had broke through the ice last winter, authorities said Monday.

Lewis and Clark County Sheriff’s Office dispatch received a call about noon Saturday that there was a diver in distress south of Cemetery Island and north of Hellgate Campground, Sheriff Leo Dutton said.

Two people were diving to retrieve a vehicle that broke through the ice last winter. They were equipped with airbags and scuba gear, he said. They were going to place “air bags” on the vehicle to get it to the surface. Dutton said they were diving at diving at about 113 feet.

So far, the investigation points to a malfunctioning regulator, he said.

They were at the vehicle for about 2 minutes, the other diver reported, Dutton said, when it appeared William Dreyer’s regulator began to “free flow.” Dreyer began to ascend and stopped moving at about 86 feet. He was pulled up out of the water and resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful.

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Dreyer is going to an autopsy Tuesday. His scuba equipment will also be sent off for examination,

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