Kjar v. American Divers, Inc

[B]Date Decided[/B]: unknown
[B]Decided By[/B]: Hawaii District Court (federal)
[B]Court[/B]: U.S.D.C. of Hawaii
[B]Citation[/B]: Kjar v. American Divers, Inc. 851 F. Sup. 388, 1994 AMC 522 (D. HI. 1991)
Niel Kjar was a commercial diverthat worked off and on for American Divers, Inc. (“ADI”) since 1981. In 1988 Kjar was working to replace asubmarine hose for ADI. The water at thedive site was approximately 65 feet deep. The tugboat [I]Holokai[/I], owned byDynamite Inc., was used as a dive station for Kjar to work from. On September 13, 1988 Kjar was injured duringa dive and suffered Type II, central nervous system decompression sickness,also known as the bends. As a result, heis now permanently disqualified from diving.

Kjar filed suit againstADI seeking damages under the Jones Act. On June 17, 1991, Kjar filed a motion for partial summary judgmentrequesting the court to find, as a matter of law, that the plaintiff wasemployed by ADI as a seaman within the meaning of the Jones Act. ADI filed a motion in opposition;specifically contesting the connection of Kjar to vessel-based work during theapplicable time period. ADI argues that Kjar had no permanent connectionwith the [I]Holokai[/I] because in thecontext of his overall employment with ADI he participated in mostly land-baseddives and that this was merely a fortuitous encounter. Kjar argues that his connection with thevessel is measured at the time of the accident, not the sum of his career withADI. Read More…