Skip to Content

Click on a label to read posts from that part of the world.

Map of the world

Shark-safe wetsuits? Would different colors help?

The Great White Shark attack off the coast of San Diego yesterday (and Mark Shaw's insightful comments about it) got me thinking about wetsuits. Doesn't it seem that most shark attacks happen because sharks confuse swimmers or surfers with seals? (See photo to get an idea of what such lovely encounters might look like.)

Here is my question. Why are most wetsuits black then? The majority of the all wetsuits I have ever rented and worn for diving have been black; hence they make you look like a seal. They might have a few color accents, but I am not sure the vision of sharks is good enough to fully appreciate them.

The guy who died in 2004 after a shark attack in Northern California was wearing an olive camouflage wetsuit that made him blend into the rocks (and possibly look more like a dolphin than a seal. Sharks like dolphins, too.) This page has a lot of interesting information about that attack.

Some sources, the surfing handbook being one of them, say the wetsuits with big color contrasts make you look like a fish, which is apparently not helpful, either. I have to say, I have never seen a 6-foot fish of crazy colors though.

Is it difficult to dye neoprene, say, all white or all orange? Would that help or is that wishful thinking?

Filed under: Scuba Diving, Surfing, Gear, North America, United States

Find Your Hotel

City name or airport
City name or airport
City name or airport
City name or airport
City name or airport
City name or airport code
If different

Search Travel Deals

Reader Comments (Page 1 of 1)

Gadling Features

Most Popular


Become our Fan on Facebook!

Featured Galleries (view all)

Berlin's Abandoned Tempelhof Airport
The Junk Cars of Cleveland, New Mexico
United Airlines 787 Inaugural Flight
Ghosts of War: France
New Mexico's International Symposium Of Electronic Arts
Valley of Roses, Morocco
The Southern Road
United Dreamliner Interior
United Dreamliner Exterior

Our Writers

Don George

Features Editor

RSS Feed

View more Writers

Weird News


FOXNews Travel


Sherman's Travel

Lonely Planet

New York Times Travel