Monterey, CA – Jorgensen and Salberg, LLP sues scuba diving school for near-death drowning of Northern California woman.
Mr. Franciscovich, a former navy diver and underwater diver for Discovery Channel, was eager to take his fiancé to earn her open water diving certificate in Monterey, CA. He enrolled his fiancé in a scuba diving class and was permitted to accompany the class with the two designated scuba instructors.
Upon arrival to the diving site, Mr. Franciscovich immediately noted the hostility of the two scuba instructors towards him, which he believed stemmed from their intimidation of him participating in the dive. Nevertheless, his fiancé was determined to earn her open water diving certificate and the two continued with the dive despite several rude remarks.
When the couple descended into the water with the class and the instructors, Mr. Franciscovich was instructed to “stay away” from his fiancé. During this time, his fiancé experienced disciplinary harassment from the scuba instructor despite not doing anything wrong. Mr. Franciscovich first noted his fiancé’s strained attempt at getting a water-free breath when she descended from the surface with the instructor. Unbeknownst to anyone, sand had entered her regulator and was making it difficult for her to breathe. She began to panic as she tried to clear her partially flooded mask, and the instructor did not offer her his regulator at this time. When she made the attempt to switch to her back-up regulator, her instructor forcefully tried to shove her primary regulator into her mouth. He missed completely, striking the side of her face, and causing her to inhale an entire breath of salt water.
Upon observing this incident, Mr. Franciscovich immediately stepped in and whisked his fiancé, who was actively choking, to the surface of the water. Nearby divers called 911 and she was taken to the nearest hospital where she was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. Mr. Franciscovich spent three days at the hospital with his fiancé while her lungs were cleared of sand and salt water.
Jorgensen and Salberg, LLP were retained to sue the scuba instructors and the scuba school for negligent infliction of emotional distress. Mr. Jorge Lopez, associate attorney at the firm, was able to reach an amicable settlement with the scuba school that covered all hospital expenses incurred as a result of the accident, as well as the damages caused by emotional distress to the Plaintiff.