07 July 2005

Autopsy reveals scuba instructor died from drowning

Autopsy results show that a scuba instructor who died while exploring a sunken battleship over the weekend drowned while inside a boiler room compartment that was sealed off to divers.

The autopsy, completed yesterday, showed that Steven Donathan drowned while inside the Yukon, a 366-foot-long Canadian destroyer that was intentionally sunk nearly five years ago to serve as an artificial reef.

Donathan's body was found pinned against the wall and entangled inside the ship's boiler room.

His air tanks were empty and there was no safety line to lead him out of the ship.

The entrance to the boiler room was welded shut, but someone apparently pried it open.

On Saturday, Donathan, known as an expert diver, got separated from a student as they were exploring the interior of the sunken warship.

Dozens of divers from various public safety agencies searched for Donathan over the next three days, aided at times by a U.S. Coast Guard cutter crew.

Shortly before 12:30 p.m. Monday, searchers found Donathan's body, but it could not be pulled out until Tuesday morning.

Source: Fox News


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