California Boat Fire Kills At Least 20

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California Boat Fire Kills At Least 20

Bella Trimmer, Staff Writer

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On Monday, September 2nd, what was supposed to be the end to a leisure-filled Labor Day weekend ended in tragedy for the crew and passengers of a 75-foot dive boat off the Californian shore. Part of the ship caught fire early Monday morning, around 3:30 in the morning according to Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown. 

Of the thirty-nine people aboard the ship—thirty-six passengers and six crew members—only five survivors have been found, all members of the crew. As of Tuesday, fourteen are still missing, and rescue crews are set to switch gears to undergo a recovery operation instead. 

The victims were most likely asleep at the time the fire broke out. Reportedly, the crew abandoned ship and jumped off before informing passengers of what was happening. The local fire department arrived in about fifteen minutes upon receiving a call, but by the time they arrived, the boat was already engulfed in flames. Every time flames were extinguished, more popped up, most likely because of the fuel reserves kept on board, the Coast Guard’s Aaron Bemis said. 

None of the recovered bodies have been identified yet.

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