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High school student drowns during diving practice in Chiba

19 Comments

An 18-year-old high school student who was practicing to get his diver's license was found unconscious by his instructors about 30 meters from the shore in Katsuura City on Wednesday. The men pulled the boy to shore and he was rushed to the hospital, but pronounced dead soon after.

According to police, a group of three students and their three instructors were diving under the water at around 2 p.m. when the boy suddenly floated up to the surface. The practice dive was part of a three-day course that began on Tuesday and took place in a recognized diving spot.

Police are currently investigating whether faulty equipment could have played a role in the incident.

© News reports

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19 Comments
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"Found"!!! How the hell did they lose him???

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whoa before you start burning people at the stake it dose not mean its his instructors fault i used to be a manager of a diving site and i know what im on about here yes he has a duty of care to his students he could well have been keeping an eye on him but it only takes a few seconds for a novice to lose control of his buoyancy or any one else for that mater the difference is someone who is more experienced can regain control quicker, it is doubtful that his equipment failed as modern gear is very well made but still possible and its something that is always checked when something like this happens anyway. there are a few things that could have happened 1.he ran out of air (instructor at fault) 2.he panicked over something and bolted to the surface thus causing a bend 3.medically unfit to dive in the first place. 4.something went wrong medically with him i.e a heart attack or stroke or what ever 5.he got pulled up by a fisherman sounds funny but its happened 6. he lost control of his buoyancy by either not dumping the air in his bcd (buoyancy control device) or dry suit which would be doubtful he that he would be using a dry suit that was connected to an air source being a novice 7. or he inflated his bcd by accident instead pressing the dump 8.his inflater button stuck when pressed. so here you see there are a few reasons what could have caused the accident but the two factor that no one so far has mentioned is how deep was he and for how long, i seen divers come up fast from 19+ meters on more than one occasion too fast and nearly flew out the water like a dolphin but only had a mild form of the bends as they were only down at depth for a few mins so some time on 100% o2 and they were ok and maybe a trip to the decompression chamber for a few hours to be on the safe side. so i wouldnt be so fast to point the finger yet im sure his instructor is feeling quite bad about it instructor standards are high

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Funny to see that certain posters already definitely know the answer before the authorities do.

No, everybody knows the answer already, including the authorities. Equipment or medical issues could have played a role, but it is always the instructor's responsibility to keep an eye on their trainees for signs of troubles. That's why they are trained and certified instructors.

It's definitely the instructors' fault regardless of the reason for the trouble.

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With a 1:1 student to instructor ratio, I wonder how something like this could happen.

Very true.... all signs point to it being the instructors fault, he could of left the boy alone or something which is very wrong for a learner..

for example my driving intructor would ask me to pull over, him get out and i drive for a bit by myself ya know? lol every learner should have constant watch especially if drowning was a possibility..

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With a 1:1 student to instructor ratio, I wonder how something like this could happen. The instructor should have prevented the kid from surfacing suddenly, but if they were doing basic open water training, they shouldn't have been deep enough for sudden surfacing to have killed the student. As others have said, it definitely looks like there was a poor response from the instructor. The students should have practiced buoyancy control with the BCD in the pool before they went in the sea. All the safety measures should have been practiced. For example - on my first open water dive, my buddy kicked my regs from my mouth. No panic, I recovered the regs, cleared them and carried on while avoiding my buddy's fins (kicking way too hard). But with a 1:1 ratio of students to instructors, the instructor should have their eyes glued to the student the whole time ready for the slightest issue.

My condolences to the family. Scuba should be fun and safe when it's done right.

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"Regardless, this definitely sounds like instructor negligence."

Funny to see that certain posters already definitely know the answer before the authorities do. But hey....(smirk)

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Stupid bastards, useless idiot instructors! I feel so sorry for this poor boy! 18 years old and dead because his idiot instructors did not keep an eye on him! I hope they get the death penalty!!! RIP poor little high school diving boy.

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It is definitely rare for this to happen..the first diving golden rule is never ever dive alone...something a miss here..every BCV have an extra breathing outlet hose, if the first one is faulty...it is definitely the boy somehow had fainted in the first place and nobody notice it.in my conclusion there are 3 factors, instructor negligence, depth of the dive and decompression, and most unlikely maybe due to diving cylinder, * gas mixtures containing proportions of oxygen other than 21% could be extremely dangerous to divers who are unaware of the proportion of oxygen in them. All cylinders should be labeled with their composition. Contaminated air at depth can be fatal. Common contaminants are: carbon monoxide a by-product of combustion, carbon dioxide a product of metabolism, oil and lubricants from the compressor.

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While I am not an experienced PADI instructor, my opinion is that an instructor is responsible for the life of the students. If there is a danger, he/she must recognize it, he/she should be aware of it and procede according to. Because it is his/her job.

If a student makes a fatal accident at a drivers test, no one says the "oh, driving a car is dangerous if you don't know how to do. poor kid, but it was an accident"

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3 students, 3 instructors....poor instructor. PADI Japan has to get tough on their instructors. The only way you are going to loose a student is a heart attack. CO2 cartridges were used until 1985.

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Drowned in what? Water or his own blood due to burst lungs. Anyway, however you cut it, the "instructors" should carry the can for this one. Just like those "guides" who got the grandparents killed last week up in Hokkaido. Although not willing to go out on a limb, I would hazard a guess and say that the "instructors" in question failed to exercise "leadership" (a foreign word in Japan in more ways than one) when S hit the F. Indeed, what were they doing these three "instructors" blowing each others' snorkel? They certainly were not overwhelmed by the number of students. Someone screwed up big time and should be made to pay for this "accident."

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I am a qualified dive control specialist and once saved a foolish novice diver from death who did not stay with his dive buddy and went of by himself.

He got lost underwater and I had to find him twice. He got lectures both times but still would not listen. Later he shot to the surface, and nearly drowned after not inflating his BSD, spitting out his regulator, started sinking while holding arms full of sea urchins which he refused to release out of panic.

He was 20 yards away from us so I swam over and rescued toed him back to shore. He was selfish and an idiot. Not a good mix for a scuba diver.

Some people just don't belong underwater and its possible that this kid was a moron and died as a result or instructor negligence. I would be interested in how deep they were at 30 meters offshore.

New divers who are yet to be licensed probably should not be at a depth of more than 5-8 meters of water and if the instructors were there for there own leisure or there for the students.

I once encountered a selfish instructor. I had to take care of her new divers as she completely neglected them, even helping one back to shore and find two others that were separated from the pack.

After these experiences I stopped showing my divecon ID at dive spots and just flashed my open water. I don't work for free.

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Headline: "High school student drowns during diving practice in Chiba" Comment: "It doesn't say he drowned." Only one thing to say about that: Wow! In the "going from bad to worse" dept: "There are many incidents in which novice divers have activated the CO2 charges on their buoyancy compensators". Any novice diver knows BC's don't have CO2 charges; BC's hook up directly to your air supply(tanks) to provide buoyancy. One learns that your first lesson!

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Hoolie: It says he drowned in the headline. The story is less specific.

Regardless, this definitely sounds like instructor negligence.

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Lack of any core information makes comment impossible.

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CO2 charges on bouyancy compensators? Are you serious? I have an advanced license and my own gear but admittedly am not up to date with the most recent gear... but seriously is that for real?

I can kind of see that it may be useful on the surface after a dive if you are really lazy, but the obvious safety issues seem hard to justify.

In any case, 3 instructors, 3 students, WTF were the instructors doing?

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It doesn't say he drowned. There are many incidents in which novice divers have activated the CO2 charges on their buoyancy compensators and shot themselves to the surface while holding their breath, the subsequent expansion of air in the lungs causing massive and fatal pulmonary barotrauma (burst lungs).

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3 students and 3 instructors... there must have been some sign of this boy drowning before he floated.. it's the instructors' fault as hoserfella says !!

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having my PADI licence, I can say with some experience of my own that the instructers were probably at fault. Bodies just don't float to the surface dead. looks like they weren't paying attention to the poor kid.

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