25 Victims Found, 9 People Missing After Diving Boat Catches Fire In California
Vanessa Romo and Merrit Kennedy
September 2, 2019
"This is probably the worst case scenario you could possibly have. You have a vessel that's on the open sea ... in the middle of the night." Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill BrownUpdated at 1:31 a.m. ET Tuesday
Twenty-five people are confirmed to have died in the weekend dive boat disaster, according to The Associated Press, citing the Coast Guard. Nine people remain missing. A total of 39 people were on board the boat.
In this photo provided by the Ventura County Fire Department, firefighters respond to a boat fire off the coast of Southern California on Monday. The U.S. Coast Guard said it launched several boats to help over two dozen people "in distress." Ventura County Fire Department via AP
Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Kroll told The AP that at least 25 people died in the accident. Kroll said five victims have been found but their bodies have not yet been recovered due to unsafe conditions under the boat. He said authorities will continue to search overnight for the nine people still missing.
Five crew members were rescued, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown told reporters at a news conference Monday afternoon.
The vessel was identified as the Conception, based out of Santa Barbara Harbor, and was on a three-day dive trip to the Channel Islands. It was operated by Truth Aquatics. Coast Guard Capt. Monica Rochester told a news conference Monday that the company has been in full compliance with regulatory standards.
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