|Once happen a time, at 9.27am on thursday, 21st December 2000.
The sun was shining brightly on the rusty hull of the Toho 5 and the sea was flat like oil. At 9.33am, a big cloud of smoke covered the fishing vessel from view, a sheet of metal was blown 50m into the air and a little later there was the loud echo of the explosion from 80 kg dynamite.
In less than 3 minutes, the aft bridge was under water while the stern remained floating at the surface.
However the sinking was inevitable, and just 3 more minutes later, le Toho V disappeared under the surface of the water for ever...With the bubbling of water stirring the sea, inexorably the fishing boat went to the dark depths.
It lies today in 26m of water, about 40 metres from the Tabou reef.
During its lifetime, the " Calédonie Toho 5 " had been the livelihood of many fishermen.
The crew were out ot sea for many months at a time. Hunting the white-finned tuna in the Pacific waters, this meant going to high latitudes and dealing the cold and storms to find their prey.
Any hour of the day or night they would lay the fishing lines of up to130km long. Good or bad weather, no more than an hour later they would bring back the 3500 fishing hooks.
During the long days at sea these men also cleaned the ship tirelessly. The Toho V was their boat but also without doubt their pride. The men spent their free time on the bridge admiring the beauty and harmony of the sea.
On thursday, 21st December 2000 at 9.33am, the seamen's joys and pains sunk with the old metal carcass close by to Tabou reef, near Amedee Lighthouse.
And now, there are multi-coloured napoleon fish, mother groupers and silver trevally which have colonised the freezers, the cabins and the helm of the old ship.
But particulary, the Toho V wreck will remain a place of meeting between the fish of the Caledonian lagoon and of scuba divers world over.
The Toho 5 was the fourth boat, after the Humboldt, the Dieppoise and the Caledonian Toho 2, to have been scuttled by the authorities with the aim of making new and interesting dive sites.