If the Capitainerie represents the control tower of a Marina, the divers are its eyes and healing hands. This is how Jean Claude ABOT qualifies himself as he keeps an eye out for degradation of boats or infrastructures. “I know the facility inside and out .I know what is wrong at a glance. My experience allows me to appreciate any anomaly, whether due to accidental degradation or to age related wear». That is the land based part of his work, the other facet of his activity is happening under water.
This professional diver, from Antibes, knows every corners of the ports in which he is to intervene. The sea is his playground “At the age of 13, my father initiated me to the submarine hunting. At 18 years, I started to dive with bottle and had my first diving certification.”
This immersion will become his work. He started a 15 years career in the army, and end up instructor in a Diving school near Lyon.
Back in the civil division, Jean-Claude Abot does not leave the maritime environment .He runs a scuba diving company before applying at the Port Camille Rayon that was, at the time , looking for a professional diver for its site .His skills and qualifications made him the successful candidate . He then moved towards the underwater work.
Today, Jean-Claude ABOT is one of the key figures of the Port “A good diver is an old diver” he stresses.
This job is pretty risky. “Working in a port means danger is coming from all directions, propellers, cables but above all, the lack of visibility” he specifies. The reckless ones don’t belong in this profession.
During winter, activity takes the form of maintenance, check and repair of the underwater infrastructure. Spring and summer are more assigned for repairs and maintenance of the boats. “We must know how to do everything (weld, mechanics , electricity ….) as we are also being called upon to do expert examination for shipyards , brokers or expert committees ,as well as expert reports , audits and technical studies for the municipality, the department or the CCI ( Chamber of Commerce and Industry) continued Jean-Claude ABOT .
Whether they are punctual or on a daily basis, these interventions require a high degree of availability “We must be ready 24/7, this is the strength of the artisan” he says proudly.
Apart from its activity in the Port Camille RAYON and in the other ports of the French Riviera, Jean Claude Abot is involved in high-scale “cleaning operation”, also he is an active volunteer in diverse measures to combat pollution such as “Pavillon bleu” operations, he participates to wreck removal and spreads the “clean boating” to boaters to take care of this exceptional environment.
Un monde sous-marin qu’il compte bien surveiller et protéger encore longtemps avant de transmettre son savoir-faire à un autre passionné de la mer et des ports.
He intends to keep an eye and protect this world beneath the sea for a while, before giving his knowledge to another transmitting his know how to another.
Written by K.NATTON