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Suit filed in case of "Girl dead, boy injured at Glacier National Park

Discussion in 'Diving Litigation' started by Jim Lapenta, May 6, 2021.

  1. happy-diver

    happy-diver Skindiver Just feelin it

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Same ocean as you!

    Tough ask good call Jim, you've got stones

    jagfish likes this.
  2. R80

    R80 Solo Diver

    Procedurally if an instructor has enough dives to self-certify is that something that they have to go through a procedure on, whether via the agency, making a note in their logbook, or by other means? Or at some number of dives can they simply sign off on certs via self-certification without any process, entry, etc on their own account?
  3. wetb4igetinthewater

    wetb4igetinthewater Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle
    20 logged applicable dives and pay a fee. In this case, have 20 dives in a dry suit and wallah! You're now a dry suit instructor.

    The self certification is an unmitigated disaster for side mount, but that's different topic .

    Self certification is something I'm vehemently against with few exceptions.
    BlueTrin likes this.
  4. roman50

    roman50 Registered

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Prague
    I think that name is 'assisted suicide' or more accurately a 'murder by consequence'. I wonder whether a prison time would be warranted for named instructor to meditate over life choices and responsibilities...

    In my opinion the business operators bear a monetary responsibility for operating such shambles however the instructor Snow is the person (in my opinion) ultimately responsible - and criminally so - for Linnea's death.

    To read this story and details in filing is like an ultimate horror.
  5. BlueTrin

    BlueTrin ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: London
    It’s a bit strange to self certify: I am not an instructor but how can you guarantee that the person meet the standards or able to teach to a certain standard?
  6. Capt Jim Wyatt

    Capt Jim Wyatt Hanging at the 10 Foot Stop Staff Member

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: High Springs - Cave Country
    The instructor submits an application outlining their experience. If it meets the standards then PADI will issue the instructor cert.
    BlueTrin likes this.
  7. Wookie

    Wookie Curmudgeon Apprentice ScubaBoard Business Sponsor ScubaBoard Supporter

    From Lisa Mills and the Mills family.

    upload_2021-6-18_20-54-17.png upload_2021-6-18_20-54-43.png upload_2021-6-18_20-54-59.png upload_2021-6-18_20-54-17.png
    Ayisha and DiveClimbRide like this.
  8. boulderjohn

    boulderjohn Technical Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Boulder, CO
    I am not all that surprised. I am no attorney, bit to me it comes down to a difference between being grossly incompetent and crossing the line to criminality. As I understand it, they would have to be able to prove that Snow knew that her actions were putting Linnea at risk of death. I am sure an attorney will step in and explain it better.
    Omisson likes this.
  9. 2airishuman

    2airishuman Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Greater Minnesota
    IMO it would be difficult to convince 12 jurors from Montana who are not divers that this was anything more than a tragic accident that demonstrates why sensible people don't scuba dive. There are too many moving parts and the individual elements of the accident chain all occur frequently in isolation. People dive overweighted all the time. People dive in new equipment all the time. There's ambiguity about instructional vs. non instructional and buddy vs. non-buddy dives all the time. People dive in drysuits without proper instruction remarkably often and there are even threads on Scubaboard where divers have been told they can figure it out themselves (albeit more experienced divers than Linnea). Diving dry without an inflator hose is a stretch but I'm sure a good defense attorney could find someone who did it without repercussions.

    There are other similar accidents that have not resulted in prosecution such as the 2017 Madiera fatality which involved:
    • A shore dive in cold, deep water
    • A student using a drysuit that was unfamiliar to them
    • Presence of non-students that occupied some of the instructor's attention
    • Evidence of excessive weighting
    • An accident chain involving loss of buoyancy control
    No doubt there are others, as these are common conditions for instruction in northern lakes.

    The task for a prosecuting attorney is daunting, as they must show that the actions of Linnea's instructor were criminal rather than a part of the inherent risks of diving under these conditions. They must do so in a way a non-diver can find compelling.

    More broadly, I believe that deep, cold dives in limited viz deserve greater respect than they perhaps receive. The instructor's and shop's actions are startlingly prevalent in tropical locations where the excellent viz, warm water, and hard shallow bottom provide an inherently less risky environment. Inland locations like Montana lack the critical mass of divers to develop the rigorous local safety culture emblematic of BSAC and some of the Lake Michigan shops.
    Omisson likes this.
  10. Wookie

    Wookie Curmudgeon Apprentice ScubaBoard Business Sponsor ScubaBoard Supporter

    Montana Code Annotated 2019
    Part 1. Homicide
    Negligent Homicide
    45-5-104. Negligent homicide. (1) A person commits the offense of negligent homicide if the person negligently causes the death of another human being.
    (2) Negligent homicide is not an included offense of deliberate homicide as defined in 45-5-102(1)(b).

    Montana Code Annotated 2019
    Part 2. Assault and Related Offenses
    Negligent Endangerment -- Penalty
    45-5-208. Negligent endangerment -- penalty. (1) A person who negligently engages in conduct that creates a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury to another
    commits the offense of negligent endangerment.
    oncor23, Ayisha and chillyinCanada like this.

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