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Posted by ChrisM on November 19, 2001 at 16:14:20:

In Reply to: That is the problem with the dive industry.. posted by MHK on November 19, 2001 at 10:57:48:

If I think I am reading your post right (which I may not be), it says "you're certified, you can dive when and where you like."

Yes, that is true, and I would not for a minute want any government regulations (a la Laguna Beach) telling me how/when/where to dive.

HOWEVER, if I am a boat captain running a commercial op, and I see someone who has a C Card but is also obviously a complete clusterfuck - in other words, showing a complete lack of preparedness or skill/ability to complete the dive, I ain't letting him off my boat. It's my boat, I can set the standards (much like Reefseekers - you run out of air, you're done for the day) however I want. You won't need to sue me for your money back, I'll give it to you.

OTOH, if I let you dive a site that I, as an experienced boat captain (hypothetically) know that is beyond your abilities simply by watching you gear up, interacting, prior dives, whatever, and I let you dive, and you get hurt due to a lack of experience, I will still get sued, and my liability insurance will not make up for the total PAIN IN THE ASS experience of being sued. Being a lawyer, I know that being sued can make life very stressful and difficult. The release will probably hold up, as they do most of the time if it gets to litigation rather than settlement, but it will still be a PITA, will affect my reputation, may affect my loss record for future insurance purposes, etc. etc.

The fact of the matter is that if I ran an operation I would set ad hoc standards if in my professional opinion there was a good chance of going TU. Maybe I wouldn't stay in business long, and maybe I don't have a firm enough grasp of how boats have to be run to make a profit, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it



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