Diving Accident Inquest

James Heyworth has recently completed a 4 day jury inquest before the Coroner’s Court in Preston, in which he was instructed on behalf of the bereaved family. The incident itself occurred at Capernwray quarry near Lancaster in 2010, during a rebreather try-dive event. The deceased, Richard Bufton, was a hugely experienced commercial and recreational diver. This case involved complex issues of causation; it being in issue whether the diving accident was as the result of a previous medical condition or factors arising from the dive itself, which was conducted on a closed-circuit rebreather. James was able to use his own experience of diving, and in particular diving closed-circuit rebreathers, to assist the court and his client with identifying a number of significant issues with the use of such breathing apparatus. Following a significant amount of expert evidence the jury returned a narrative verdict which confirmed that this was a diving accident and not the result of any medical condition.