fbpx

Search For Survivors Continues Off Santa Cruz Island After Deadly Boat Fire

The boat sank off the coast of Santa Cruz island At least eight people are dead and more than 20 others are missing after a charter boat caught fire...

(Photo Credit: Ventura County Fire Department)

The boat sank off the coast of Santa Cruz island

At least eight people are dead and more than 20 others are missing after a charter boat caught fire off the coast of Southern California. The boat, called the Conception, caught fire and sank after an explosion on board.

The boat sank about 20 yards from Santa Cruz island, which is just off the coast from Santa Barbara, California.

Several dozen people were aboard the Conception for a diving trip. Some were celebrating birthdays and special occasions. The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but police say they do not suspect foul play.

One couple, Bob and Shirley Hansen, who were on their private boat at the time of the explosion, helped rescue passengers from the Conception. They told local media the scene was horrific.

“It was horrific, the pounding,” Shirley Hansen said. “Our boat is very well made. Having that sound come through [showed] they were very in need of help.”

Of the 39 people aboard the Conception, five–all crew members–have been confirmed as rescued. Four bodies have been recovered from the ocean, and four others are visible near the wreck on the ocean floor. The other passengers remain unaccounted for, and Santa Barbara police say “search and rescue” missions are underway.

Follow @TwistityNews