Rescuers locate 25 bodies from California boat fire; 9 still missing

Rescuers locate 25 bodies from California boat fire; 9 still missing

Four bodies have been recovered and four others have been located on the ocean floor near Santa Cruz Island, where the commercial dive boat Conception caught fire and sank early Monday.

None of a dive boat's 34 passengers survived a fast-moving fire that sunk it off California's Santa Cruz Island, officials said on Tuesday, as recovery workers prepared to try to retrieve 14 bodies still believed to be on the vessel or in the ocean. Authorities are trying to stabilize the boat that sank in about 60 feet (18 meters) of water so divers can recover those remains.

He said he was on the phone all day Monday as friends checked to make sure he had not been on the boat.

Authorities will search for the nine people still unaccounted for through the night.

United States Coast Guard Capt. Monica Rochester said the search was suspended because no other people were seen entering the water.

The dive boat where a fire broke out before dawn Monday morning was on a Labor Day weekend cruise taking divers to the Channel Islands off the coast of Southern California.

Brown said the elements of the tragedy were daunting for rescuers: The boat was in a remote location with limited firefighting capabilities, passengers were sleeping below deck in the middle of the night and there was a quick-moving fire.

Ms Rochester said the Conception, which was launched in 1981 by a Santa Barbara-based company called Truth Aquatics, "has been in full compliance" with safety regulations, and that its owner was cooperating with investigators.

"It's a big boat and we know we have many dead, I do not have an exact number", Bill Nash, a spokesman for Ventura County, warned early in the morning. Many if not all of them are thought to have been sleeping below deck at the time.

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The latter asks him if the passengers can go out and if the crew has fire extinguishers to fight the flames, but the answers are inaudible.

A photo tweeted by the department showed a boat engulfed in flames.

Divers prepare to search for victims on September 3, 2019, in Santa Barbara.

"I could see the fire coming through holes on the side of the boat", he said.

A short time later, a U.S. Coast guard dispatcher can then be heard reporting 34 people trapped below deck on the burning boat. The captain of the boat has been identified as Jerry Boylan; he is one of the five crew members who escaped the fire. The first one is organized by Finstad and her husband, Dan Chua, and costs $900, he said. Five people escaped from the fire, all of whom were crew members and two of whom have leg injuries, according to CNN.

The Conception, based in Santa Barbara Harbor on the mainland, was owned by Santa Barbara-based Truth Aquatics, founded in 1974. He attached a line and pulled it into deeper water where the fireboats could reach.

The dispatcher requested the Global Positioning System location of the vessel at least two more times but the caller apparently fails to respond.

A relative says five people from one Northern California family are missing and presumed dead after the scuba diving boat they were on burned near a Southern California island.

Pilecki said divers do not typically worry about fires and are more concerned with the potential for currents to sweep them out to sea, decompression sickness while diving and shipwrecks.

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