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Legal considerations for the Fire on dive boat Conception in CA

Discussion in 'Scuba Related Court Cases' started by onestep, Sep 3, 2019.

  1. KWS

    KWS ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: SE TEXAS

    I had a DM tell me this. The rational was that the DM is trained to provide assistance and there for has no way to justify seeing and ignoring a situation. They cant say they did not know what to do to help. the same thing goes with Master divers since they have to have rescue. Being a non active DM may be a different thing. He also brought up the issue of if anything happens they look up all the divers in the area so that again if you presented a AOW they would know you were DM qualified and curently insured proving you were active. that too,, may vary state to state. He says it is treated as a paid publlic servant. like a fire truck can not pass an ongoing fire without stopping if they see no department is present and is not on a call, they have to at least call it in as a minimal response and continue to their assigned scene. Once you become a company man you sorta loose the good samaritan options. the problem to pointing blame is this,,,, can you prove the DM knew there was a problem or not. Probably a hard thing to prove in many cases, but very simple on other cases. Doctors have the same issue when coming on a scene while traveling. They are required to stop and at lest offer assistance. but if no one knew you were there you just drive by with out stopping to avoid being sued.
  2. djcheburashka

    djcheburashka Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, CA
    Yes, there is such a situation: It's called a duty of care.

    A passerby does not have a duty of care. Someone else on the dive who just happens to be a divemaster does not have a duty of care.

    Someone who is paid to provide a service, however, does have a duty of care. A duty of care that, generally, they cannot get out of by contract. This is the singular concept that you have pervasively refused to understand.

    The classic example, in the law, is the captain of a ship!
  3. cerich

    cerich ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Georgia
    duty of care and duty to rescue or provide aid are not the same.

    Duty of rescue in maritime law is to go to the aid of another ship/mariners in distress.
    Bob DBF and chillyinCanada like this.
  4. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
    Anything that follows an intro like this is suspect. No reason to think that DM had any correct info, other than myth, rumor, and hearsay.
  5. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC PADI Pro

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: United States
    Duty of care does not apply to a DM outside of a DM role. If a doctor rolls by an accident, they have a duty of care. The same does not apply to a DM.
    chillyinCanada likes this.
  6. KevinNM

    KevinNM DIR Practitioner

    It depends in state law. In NM, they have no duty unless they are there in some sort of official role.
    Hoyden and KWS like this.
  7. KWS

    KWS ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: SE TEXAS
    Unless some knows you are a doctor ,,,, there is no enforcement to rendering care. The doctor can just drive by. AND DO. That is how you kep your malpractice costs down. Just another one of the worlds sad realities.
  8. Cowfish Aesthetic

    Cowfish Aesthetic Barracuda

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Chicago
    I would strongly encourage anyone who is uncertain of their legal risks and obligations to seek the advice of a competent attorney and not put any faith in the musings they may find on the internet, particularly those in this thread.
    Cirdan likes this.
  9. Lorenzoid

    Lorenzoid idling in neutral buoyancy

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Atlanta, USA
    I'm going to go with @KevinNM 's assertion that it could vary by state. A quick Google reveals at least one assertion that a doctor does not have a duty of care in that situation: "A doctor dining in a restaurant has no duty to come forward and assist a fellow customer who is suffering a heart attack." What Is a Doctor's Duty of Care? - FindLaw
  10. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    Nah. If I can help, I certainly will. I'm not going to hide behind fears of "what if they sue" if I see someone I can help. I'm not going to throw caution to the wind, and I'll protect myself from becoming another victim. My ethics outweigh my common sense, and I'm glad of that.

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