A scuba diver is fighting to keep the old Narrows Bridge in its place - deep beneath the surface of Puget Sound.

The bridge was nicknamed Galloping Gertie because it rippled in the wind, twisted and crashed into the sound during a storm just four months after it opened in 1940.It rests in 30 to 260 feet of water in Puget Sound's slimmest channel, the Tacoma Narrows, beneath the bridge that replaced it.

Over the years, these remains have become a barnacle-encrusted reef teeming with marine life.

But Bob Mester says the bridge is disappearing piece by piece, collected as scrap metal by salvagers.

Mester and other divers hope to protect the bridge by getting it listed on the state Register of Historic Places and the federal and Tacoma registers.

The bridge could pump millions of dollars into the local economy if it were promoted as a world-class scuba diving spot, he said.