I thought we all knew there was no watch set. If there was, this would have been a minor incident.
The article doesn’t claim to have made this discovery. It’s about how this was not an isolated incident and exposes the fact that the regulation mandating a nightwatch was ignored by dive boat operators.
I think the article is an effort to soften the ground on potential liability including the criminal investigations ongoing. Several captains going on record admitting to knowing yet ignoring the requirement, minimizing it, and ‘discovering’ the importance. Makes it seem like an industry issue vice a single Captain’s crime. There is also the conscious effort by multiple Captains making a case that a Captain has full autonomy from the owner, who left things alone onboard.
Article in todays Washington Post regarding another lawsuit on behalf of deceased passengers and a crew member…Adding more public perception fuel to the battery-charger causation theory, still before the NTSB has released their report.
Also the accusation that the lack of watch was a regular occurrence:
“First, federal law requires that there be a night watch to prevent the very tragedy that occurred,” Mongeluzzi said. “We believe that we’re going to be able to prove that there was no night watch, not on this voyage and not on other voyages, and that their crew was not trained.”
And the suggestion of additional potential avenue for charges against the captain:
“The victims’ lawyers also aim to encourage a case of criminal ineptitude against the ship’s captain, Jerry Boylan, using a statute known as seaman’s manslaughter. It dates back to the 19th century as a means to punish negligent steamboat captains for deadly accidents. Such a charge must be brought against Boylan by the federal government, which has yet to file any formal actions.”