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Cave Fills on LP tanks

Discussion in 'Technical Diving' started by ScubaFeenD, Oct 15, 2010.

  1. bamafan

    bamafan Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Panama City Beach, Fl.
    984
    470
    I do it all the time on my lp tanks but the problem is that it is illegal. If OSHA ever gets wind of this the shops could be charged with willful negligence. It is a serious issue for dive shops doing this. I honestly think most shops would go out of business due to the fine and cost of litigating something like this. The self serve shops would probably not be effected by this as they don't have any employees. I certainly hope the practice doesn't end but if I owned a dive shop and had my employees overfilling lp tanks I surely wouldn't sleep well at night knowing the fines and possible jail time I could be facing for willfully having my employees violate federal law.
     
    Colliam7 likes this.
  2. LiteHedded

    LiteHedded Contributor

    4,078
    930
    I think you'd need to find a prosecutor who would waste their time prosecuting something like this at the dive shop level. that's a tough get.

    it would be a slam dunk civil case probably if ANYONE EVER had ever been injured by this practice
     
  3. kelemvor

    kelemvor Big Fleshy Monster ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Largo, FL USA
    7,262
    4,287
    ..and here I thought stroke was a derogatory term that helped give DIR such a bad reputation that organizations like GUE decided to distance themselves from it.

    Live and Learn, I guess.
     
  4. bamafan

    bamafan Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Panama City Beach, Fl.
    984
    470
    Osha is self funded. They are looking for fines to pay the Bill's. They most certainly would go after this because it is low hanging fruit and the dive shops are clueless about how to handle an osha inspection and how to handle the fine process. All it would take is one person calling and filing a complaint with Osha. A disgruntled employee, pissed ex wife, or a business partner who feels they got screwed. Anyone can call or go online and file a complaint. You can even do it anonymously. With the way the law is written it would probably benefit any employee to file a complaint as it would essentially make them untouchable ar work.
     
  5. Scuba J7

    Scuba J7 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Somewhere between here and there.
    293
    121
    What is the punishment for overfilling scuba cylinders?
     
  6. kelemvor

    kelemvor Big Fleshy Monster ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Largo, FL USA
    7,262
    4,287
    Are you kidding? Dive shops "lose" the opportunity to charge me for that extra 39 cubic feet of gas. If that isn't a punishment, I don't know what is.
     
    Scuba J7 likes this.
  7. bamafan

    bamafan Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Panama City Beach, Fl.
    984
    470
  8. LiteHedded

    LiteHedded Contributor

    4,078
    930
  9. Scuba J7

    Scuba J7 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Somewhere between here and there.
    293
    121
    What about an individual that doesn’t employ anyone?

    That doesn’t say anything about overfilled cylinders just unsafe this and that section, I’m looking specifically for fines and punishment related to overfilling cylinders. I don’t employ anyone and neither does my local scuba shop.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  10. 2airishuman

    2airishuman Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Greater Minnesota
    2,633
    1,890
    There are multiple laws, regulations, and jurisdictions involved, so there is no simple answer.

    Generally, the USDOT regulates the transportation of compressed gasses. It is a violation of the CFRs (code of federal regulations) to transport compressed gasses in interstate commerce in violation of the maximum fill limits. Fines up to $10,000 per occurrence can be assessed, in theory. All states incorporate the CFRs into state regulations in some form, and apply them to intrastate commerce as well. Possible fines vary from state to state.

    Private use, unrelated to commerce, is outside the statutory authority of the USDOT. Commerce is broadly defined, so transportation on a for-hire dive boat, or for paid instruction, or a dive shop being paid for fills knowing the cylinders would be transported, would be covered by the regulations. The situation for private use under state law varies from state to state, with most states requiring pressure vessels not used in compliance with DOT regulations to meet other, generally more stringent requirements (such as posting bond, annual inspection by an engineer, an annual pressure vessel license, or an ASME approval stamp).

    But enforcement is weak across the board. I'm not aware of any publicized cases.

    If there's an accident and someone gets killed or even badly hurt, well, there are all kinds of opportunities for civil and criminal prosecution. If you read some of the liability cases that result in very large jury awards that are upheld on appeal, they look a lot like this --- someone engaging in an activity with known risks to the general public, on a for-hire basis, who has been trained and educated in safe practices, who then deliberately, egregiously, and routinely disregards those safe practices in order to make more money, resulting in an accident. It wouldn't even take a cylinder rupture. Someone crashing their divemobile into a minivan after a burst disc blew in the back seat would do it.
     
    bamafan likes this.

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