Monday, August 09, 2010

Coroner: Tour Operator's Failings Led to Scuba Diver's Death

Early last month we brought you the tragic case of scuba diver Donna Newton's death. Much debate swirled around the responsibility of the divemaster, Fabrizio Cardo, and what some were calling his negligence.

Since then, a coroner has concluded that Donna lost her life as the result of a series of basic failures by tour organizers.

Gillingham-born Donna Newton, 40, died after running into difficulties during a dive off the scenic Pacific islands on Tuesday, October 6 last year.

Mid Kent Coroner Roger Sykes said vital procedures to ensure underwater safety were not followed.

Donna should have been accompanied by a dive buddy who is supposed to help if she got into difficulty.

But the buddy swam off on her own.

The tour's divemaster also failed to watch over them.

A radio equipment tuned to an emergency beacon carried by divers was also found to not be switched on.

In his damning verdict Mr Sykes said: "Her dive master failed to keep watch over her and her dive buddy.

"Her dive buddy failed to signal to Donna and the dive master that she had to ascend early and the dive master failed to notice that Donna had a loss of buoyancy control on her ascent probably caused by vomiting into her mask and mouthpiece.

"These were serious failures to conform to recognised diving practices."

Donna was last seen swimming behind some turtles 30 metres below the surface. It was some time before Divemaster Fabricio Carbo noticed she was missing. She was found floating on her back with her mask off and blood and vomit around her nose.

Her buoyancy jacket was inflated and she'd operated her emergency beacon but the receiver aboard the dive boat was switched off.

Her mum Diana says her daughter's death should be a warning to others.

She said: "If I can stop another family going through the hell we have endured since October then it is something.

Continue reading...

Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the family and friends of Ms. Newton.

Bookmark and Share

No comments: