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Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole

Posted By: Marty

Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/13/15 06:50 PM

Authorities are currently investigating the death of 66-year-old American National Roger Piper, from Arizona, Texas USA who passed away during a dive expedition. Initial reports indicate that Piper, along with his family, employed Amigos de Mar Diver Center for a dive trip to the Blue Hole on Tuesday, March 10th.

At about 50 feet below water, Piper started to experience breathing complications and alerted the Amigos del Mar dive crew. He was brought up to the surface but Piper was already unconscious. The team performed primary dive medical care in attempts to resuscitated Piper. All attempts failed.

Click here to read the rest of the article in the San Pedro Sun

Posted By: Azgirl

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/14/15 07:31 PM

There is quite a bit of incorrect information here regarding our friend. I hope this is just your newspapers negligence in checking facts and not the dive shop trying to cover themselves.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/14/15 07:50 PM

What are the facts?
Posted By: Azgirl

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/14/15 08:12 PM

Roger Pieper, a recently retired airline pilot, in excellent health and with no medical or heart problems at all, was completing his dive at the Blue Hole. He was an experienced diver who had dove the Hole 2 1/2 years ago as well. I guess we need to go back and ask the dive shop people who brought him to the boat to ask them what they actually reported to the police, as what was reported in the article was not what any of us heard or saw on the police reports. I pray his family never has to see the hurtful things written, and I hope the paper prints a correction and apology in case they do.
Posted By: PSSunshinegal

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/14/15 09:05 PM

Yes, Azgirl where is your authentication of the fact that this unfortunate man had no heart disease?
Posted By: Azgirl

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/15/15 01:51 PM

I find it disgraceful that the San Pedro times, a " news source" is not being asked to produce their facts to prove something they printed in the press as accurate. Whoever wrote the piece clearly was not privy to doctor reports or anyone who witnessed the event. If they did say they were, they were lieing. It is the paper now that has the onus of proof, not us. There is no great mystery here. Just a wonderful man who is gone. His family should not have to see inaccurate hurtful things in print.
Posted By: bywarren

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/15/15 03:16 PM

[quote= It is the paper now that has the onus of proof, not us. [/quote]

This is an unfortunate tragedy for the family and friends.
It appears to me that you are inferring potential liability on the dive operator or others involved with the accident. If that is the case, a message board is not the place to address that. The proof falls on those suggesting that and should be addressed thru the proper legal channels.
An anonymous person raising it on a message board seems to me to accomplish nothing other than causing more pain for the family.
If I were to believe everything I read or heard in the media, I would be less than informed and do not expect press reports to always be 100% accurate.
If you feel this is not a legal issue and only one of inaccurate reporting, and assuming you have facts to contradict what was reported, then a letter to the editor of the paper pointing out those facts would seem a better options than making innuendos on a message board.
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/15/15 04:56 PM

Dear Azgirl
I see that you just registered for this forum yesterday. Perhaps you have been a lurking here and do know many of us - again perhaps this is your first visit.

Everyone on the island suffers a loss when a diver dies. Newspapers 'report' the news; they do not make it up. This is so world wide. Most of us here personally know everyone who works at the newspaper and I can testify they they are extremely cautious in their reporting.

Many of us are divers and understand the risks involved in this sport. Just out of curiosity - are you a diver? Were you on the boat when this happened?

I think all of us are eager to know the facts - please stay with us and we will make every attempt to be kind and courteous.
Posted By: Welland

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/15/15 05:58 PM


Well said.
Posted By: cracked up

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/16/15 06:37 PM

"they they are extremely cautious in their reporting", not always...........
Posted By: Marty

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/16/15 10:30 PM

The San Pedro Sun has changed their article on the diver who was killed. I am removing the part (as the Sun did) about the pre existing medical condition and bypass...

Perhaps AzGirl just signed up because she had knowledge directly pertaining to this subject. She knows some very relevant facts...
Posted By: seashell

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/17/15 05:07 AM

Yes, and if indeed the deceased began having trouble breathing at around 50', is AZgirl able to tell us her version of what csused that initial problem?
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/17/15 04:52 PM


I feel deeply for the deceased, for his family and for the dive masters and fellow divers ......

Posted By: Marty

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/18/15 05:25 PM

‘The Amigo’s Del Mar staff and management extends its deepest sympathies to the Pieper family at this very difficult time. We are all saddened by the loss of Mr. Roger Pieper. We followed all of the correct protocols from the outset to ensure that everything that could be done, was done for both Mr. Pieper and his family. We worked closely with the authorities at that time and thank them for their professionalism and efforts. We will continue to work with them during their investigations. ’
Posted By: Marty

Re: Diver dies while diving the Blue Hole - 03/19/15 09:17 PM

Conflicting witness reports raise serious questions about diver’s death
An initial incident report taken by the San Pedro police was comprised of statements issued by Amigos del Mar employees. According to the report the crew had learned that Pieper had undergone triple bypass surgery last year as he suffered from heart problems. They also indicated that his condition was not reported to the dive company prior to the dive. Persons suffering from heart conditions are not allowed to dive. But the Belize City Police incident report, derived from the witness reports of family members, mentions nothing of Pieper having had triple bypass surgery or heart problems. Moreover, the family members have indicated that as a First Class Pilot, Pieper suffered from no medical conditions and was in optimal health. “As a family we are very distraught over this event. Roger Pieper was a very well respected and much loved father and grandfather. He was an experienced diver who had gone on many dives around the world without even the smallest incident because he was so cautious and professional in all he did. Roger had recently retired after a very successful career as a pilot and was excited to begin a new chapter of his life with his family. Roger was in excellent health, and very physically active, which makes this event such a shock for all who knew him. Roger was very active in his community, where he made many friends and was very active in the church. We all miss him so very much and are very saddened by all of this. Roger is survived by his wife Anne, daughter Sarah, twin sons Christopher and Andrew, and grandchildren, Brian, Kylie, Haley and Jacob. Roger had just turned 65 and we all had high hopes to spend many more years with him on many more adventures. He will be sorely missed,” stated a release issued by the family.

Posted By: user87

I was there that day - 03/20/15 04:11 AM

Im here because I was looking for more information about what happened that day, I WAS ON THAT BOAT, I SAW Mr Roger die, i can not say if he had any heart problem, but I can tell you that there were many things wrong that day; Accidents are gonna happen always, and we all know the risks about diving, the thing is, if something happens the company must be prepared for that, Mr Pieperīs wife was there, and iīm pretty sure she thinks that 1:30-2 hours to help itīs not good, thatīs what it took to the helicopter to arrived to half moon caye, where we went for help, and to wait for the helicopter or the coast guard. On the boat there was only a mask ventilation that was used to help Mr Roger, just that?!!!!!!! some boat brought oxygen tanks, but no more.
Posted By: user87

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 04:22 AM

oh I forgot something!!! after Mr Roger died, the company asked us to continue the trip, and people went for the second diving, the crew said they were very sorry and sad but accidents happens and we needed to continue the tour, I dont know what you think about that, but for me it was very disrespectful; Of course the crew tried to help, but they couldnīt make a lot, because they didnīt have the equipment
Posted By: seashell

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 09:20 AM

I'm very sorry this happened at all and that you had to witness it. I'm also a bit confused.

The boat had oxygen and had other boats donate more? Is this what I understand you to be saying?

Did you expect that there would also be a defibrillator onboard? Yes, I'm sure it is beyond distressing for his wife to have to wait for the helicopter. Unfortunately, the Atolls are far from shore and the helicopter dispatch area.

Experienced scuba divers know or should know the risk of diving in somewhat remote areas.

No one would make the other divers continue to dive the second and third dive but if some of the divers wanted to do so,then that is what would be offered.. No,I wasn't there but had I been, I don't believe it would have been disrespectful to continue diving. Though I do believe some of the divers aboard may have been too shaken up to continue diving that day. That would be their choice.

Posted By: Mike Campbell

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 11:37 AM

We need to learn more respect for our guests. They, the customer, are always right,
Posted By: SimonB

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 12:01 PM

Which one? I was not on that boat but knowing how upset some divers can get when they can't get into the water (it's always an issue on bad weather days) which customer would be right, the one wanting to dive or the one not wanting to dive?
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 01:28 PM

Correct me if I an wrong about the timing of the helicopter evacuation, I think that 90 minutes for a helicopter to arrive is pretty fast. They are not standing ready as an ambulance service. Somebody had to contact them, get pilot etc. and it must take about half an hour to fly there?
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 04:07 PM

I would also like to know what level of certification the diver had. Many people never bother to get an advanced certificate even if they have done 100's of dives. This is an issue PADI and DAN have been pushing for.

I thought all dive boats carried oxygen and all dive masters had CPR training.

Perhaps an option could have been to put the victim, family, dive master and anyone who did not want to continue the dive on Half Moon Bay to await for the Coast Guard and helicopter.

This is a very ticklish matter. Imagine you are a diver who has spent a lot of money and have a limited amount of time to do the dives of your dreams. There is nothing you can do for the victim. Then of course the dive operator would have to refund the money to anyone who did not dive.

It's one of those daxxed if you do and daxxed if you don't situations. Believe me - the dive shop will be put through hell while being thoroughly investigate.





Posted By: cracked up

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 07:37 PM

If it could have made a difference, time wise to save the victim, Northern 2 Cayes has an airstrip, 20 minutes by fixed wing acft. from Belize City or SPR. Also, a dr. could have most likely been available for the flt.
just hindsight now though..........
Posted By: Loansum-Al K

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 07:48 PM

Originally Posted by ScubaLdy
I would also like to know what level of certification the diver had. Many people never bother to get an advanced certificate even if they have done 100's of dives. This is an issue PADI and DAN have been pushing for.

I thought all dive boats carried oxygen and all dive masters had CPR training.

Perhaps an option could have been to put the victim, family, dive master and anyone who did not want to continue the dive on Half Moon Bay to await for the Coast Guard and helicopter.

This is a very ticklish matter. Imagine you are a diver who has spent a lot of money and have a limited amount of time to do the dives of your dreams. There is nothing you can do for the victim. Then of course the dive operator would have to refund the money to anyone who did not dive.

It's one of those daxxed if you do and daxxed if you don't situations. Believe me - the dive shop will be put through hell while being thoroughly investigate.

For God's sake Harriette there's a dead man with his family and you think the other people are entitled to fulfill the vacation of their dreams while rigamortus sets in on the poor stiff. Reminds me of one of the National Lampon Vacation movies when they tied the dead grandmother to the top of the roof of their car while they finished their vacation laugh
Posted By: Decompression

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 07:50 PM

No matter the particulars in this case, its been a tough year+ for the ADM operation.


DC
Posted By: SimonB

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 09:14 PM

I think the reason for Half Moon over Northern 2 may have something to do with the facilities for support at the rangers station during an emergency.
Posted By: seashell

Re: I was there that day - 03/20/15 10:16 PM

I agree with Diane as to the length of time for helicopter to arrive seems to be almost as fast as it could possibly get there and so must have been contacted right away.

Loansum, do you dive? Some divers might even have thought it the respectful thing to do, to continue diving because for example, if I were the victim myself, I wouldn't want anyone to miss their dives because of me. And I'd want them to continue their dives if they felt able. That to me would be respectful and an honor of my love of diving and our diving fellowship.
Posted By: reaper

Re: I was there that day - 03/21/15 12:11 AM

It's a very long boat ride from the Blue Hole to Northern Two Caye. Gustavo flies a lot of missions in the 407 and 206 with Astrum Helicopters. They are not just on stand by for medical events. Did they have to wait for a doctor before launching from Belize City? In a perfect scenario it would be at least an hour to get out help flown out there, IMHO.

As for an AED, they only help two types of heart rhythms. And CPR, once started, shouldn't be stopped. Usually a survivor of CPR is treated at a hospital in a rapid manner.

As for continuing diving that day, that should have been left up to the non family member divers, IMHO.

Posted By: AJ Baxter

Re: I was there that day - 03/21/15 12:23 AM

Marty,
Might be time to close this thread. Too many opinions from individuals with no direct knowedge or information to add.

Just one more opinion...
Posted By: Tracker

Re: I was there that day - 03/21/15 01:16 AM

Originally Posted by AJ Baxter
Marty,
Might be time to close this thread. Too many opinions from individuals with no direct knowedge or information to add.

Just one more opinion...


Could not agree more. Marty close this thread lets show some respect for the family.
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