The flames enveloped the boat off Santa Cruz Island in Ventura County, while passengers slept. After several hours, the coastguard confirmed: “At this point, we are not aware of survivors”
LOS ANGELES – At least 34 people died in boat fire off the coast of California, near the island of Santa Cruz. The coast guard was able to bring only 5 crew members to safety.
The boat, according to reports in the American media, would have caught fire at night, around three o’clock local time (14 in Italy), catching the 34 passengers in their sleep. The five crew members managed to leave the boat on their own before being rescued by the coast guard intervened with two helicopters and three boats.
The confirmation of the victims arrived only several hours later by the Santa Barbara County fire brigade: “At this point, we have no knowledge of survivors, “said coast guard Aaron Bemis,” the passengers were below decks and trapped by the fire. ” The boat, called Conception, was returning from a three-day scuba diving cruise, it should have been back in the evening today. The five people who were rescued were crew members who were in the main cabin and managed to get out.