All 6 crew members were asleep when a fire started on the diving boat that went up in flames off the California coast and killed 34 people: NTSB preliminary report

  • All six crew members on the diving boat that caught fire in California on September 2 were sleeping when the fire started, the National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report released Thursday.
  • That finding by the National Transportation Safety Board suggests that the crew had failed to uphold a commitment to have someone awake. Thirty-four of the boat’s 39 occupants were killed, including all 33 passengers.
  • In interviews with the NTSB, three crew members said they were not aware of any mechanical or electrical issues on the vessel.
  • The NTSB is investigating the incident and has not determined the cause of the fire.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

All six crew members on the diving boat that caught fire off the coast of California on September 2 were sleeping when the fire started, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said in a preliminary report released Thursday.

That finding by the National Transportation Safety Board suggests that the crew had failed to uphold a commitment to have someone awake.

Thirty-four of the boat’s 39 occupants were killed, including all 33 passengers. In interviews with the NTSB, three crew members said they were not aware of any mechanical or electrical issues on the vessel.

According to the NTSB, on the night of the fire, one crew member said they noticed the flames at the back of the ship’s top deck. The crew members said they attempted to reach the passengers through a cabin on the main deck, but it was filled with smoke and fire, the NTSB said.

The crew members then jumped overboard, and, after determining that there was no fire in the ship’s engine room, they made their way to another ship nearby where the captain continued to seek help over a radio. Two crew members returned to the diving boat to look for survivors, according to the NTSB report. Local Coast Guard and fire-department personnel eventually extinguished the fire.

The NTSB is continuing to investigate the incident and has not determined the cause of the fire.

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