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Posted by Captain Tim Burke on April 30, 2003 at 17:49:56:

4/30/03 5:35 PM
For several months I have told of a pending law suit with me. Well I can now talk about it, and I am.
Almost 2 years ago I had a charter to Farnsworth Banks and the backside of Catalina. It was a very nice day, no currents and the last dive was near "Eagle Rock". A DM, the crew, and myself were on deck. A diver came up, yelled for help and sunk. This was one of the most gruesome things I have ever witnessed. The DM jumped in immediately, followed by one of the crew.
FTR, she had a buddy, she ran out of air, she did not drop her weight belt, she had a game bag full of urchins clipped to her BC, she did not release the game bag, she did not inflate her BC, she did not drop her weight belt, she left her buddy, she was in some kelp, but not tangled.
The diver was found on the bottom, not breathing. The crewmember with the help of two others brought the diver to the surface. She was brought back to the boat and CPR was administered. We transferred her to Bay Watch.
After 5 weeks in a coma, she pulled out.
One year is the statue of limitation for this type of lawsuit. Hers was filed on the very last day. She sued the shop, the owners, the "Great Escape" and me (Tim Burke). Today I have finally been dropped from the lawsuit, but the shop is still named.
Here is the kicker.
The DM's were both covered by NAUI insurance. As I have said before on this board and others, the main reason for DM's is that when you have them, their insurance is supposed to umbrella the others involve. Whether it is a pool, dive shop, or dive boat. To date; NAUI has refused to cover me at all. Not one phone call, message or anything. So what is the reason to have a DM. My crew can do just as good a job as most DM's. We all know CPR and how to administer o2.
All DM's and shop owners beware. Call NAUI and find out what the hell is going on. If they say it is not true, just tell them about me and see what they say.
If you go to www.NAUI.org and to 2002/2003 insurance then to INFO, then to understanding insurance coverage, it will tell you I am lying. But I am not. They have not paid one penny in my defense and are still fighting it. Also on the same page go to the FAQ and it says there that any boat a DM works on is covered automatically, so no reason to put it in writing.
Once again I am telling all that insured by NAUI BEWARE and call, email, or what ever, but find out.
At this time, anyone insured by NAUI, in my opinion are useless. Not because of the DM, but the lack of insurance provided by NAUI.
NAUI reps, any comments?
Captain Tim Burke
Great Escape Charters

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