Friends work to retrieve diver's body
Divers at Tank Cave in South Australia's south-east have spent the day shifting rocks to clear a path so they can retrieve the body of renowned Melbourne diver Agnes Milowka.
The 29-year-old was found dead after becoming separated from her diving buddy on Sunday in the eight-kilometre-long channel system near Mount Gambier.
Tank Cave is one of Australia's longest underwater caves.
A number of cave divers who were friends of Ms Milowka are helping police. One of them, Richard Harris, says it is an extremely difficult process.
"She's in a very narrow, rocky piece of passage which we're working on actually opening up and clearing so that it's safe for us to enter and then safe and manageable to bring Agnes back out," he said.
"Obviously to swim in somewhere yourself is one thing, but to actually bring someone back out with you is a bit harder again."
Just moving a piece of rubble stirs up enough sediment to drop visibility to almost zero for several hours, Superintendent Trevor Twilley said.
The body retrieval is unlikely to be completed on Wednesday.
"It is a fairly extensive and complex operation, and given the complexity of the cave system and how narrow some parts of the cave system is... it could be a couple of days, anywhere up to maybe 10 dives," he said.
"Some of the divers, when they are going through a particular channel, have the walls of the cavity pressed up against the front of their body and the back of their body."
Superintendent Twilley said police will not know what happened until they recover and test Ms Milowka's equipment.
One of her air cylinders has been recovered.
It is understood her parents are at the site.
Ms Milowka believed cave diving was the essence of exploration and knew the risks, but said on her website the rewards were worth it.
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