If you are looking for a way to combine water activities and flying, look no further than the Jetlev – which can lift a person 30 feet or about 9 meters high by pumping water from a backpack through a hose connected to a small, unmanned boat:
The Jetlev is starting to show up for recreational rental in warm water vacation spots like San Diego, Key West and Cancun, Mexico, but they have also been a source of concern in Hawaii according to the AP.
Specifically, University of Hawaii coral scientist Bob Richmond has told state officials he is concerned about the noise the devices make because fish avoid areas that are too loud plus he is worried that fish and coral larvae could get pumped through some of the equipment the watercraft uses and die. There have also been complaints from fishermen.
These concerns have prompted the state Department of Land and Natural Resources to call a public meeting last month to discuss the devices. At the meeting, the department’s top enforcement officer expressed alarm over unsafe Jetlev maneuvers, such as riders dive-bombing into the water next to moving boats.
Jeffrey Krantz, the owner of H2O Sports Powered by Seabreeze, which operates the sole Jetlev in commercial use on Oahu, has suggested the state set aside special areas for jetpack use. His company takes about 10 people on Jetlev rides daily at a rate of $179 for 15 minutes while a quick look at the Jetlev’s maker’s website reveals the new 2013-model year JETLEV R200x starts at around $68,500 – meaning Jeffrey has a pretty good rate of return on his investment in the device and he won’t want to see it get banned.
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