The Latest On The Conception Boat Fire

Sep 6, 2019


Law enforcement personnel, including a member of the FBI Underwater Search and Evidence Response Team wait on a jetty on September 3, 2019, in Santa Barbara, California.; Credit: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images


Today on AirTalk we hear the latest updates on the Conception dive boat fire that killed 34 people.

Interviews with crew members conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board have begun to reveal a detailed picture of what happened the night of the fire. Crew members say doors leading down to the passenger’s sleeping area were engulfed in flames, blocking their way. When they couldn’t get through the ships front windows either, the crew jumped into the water to escape the heat and smoke.

According to law enforcement sources contacted by The Los Angeles Times, the preliminary investigation suggests lapses in safety protocol. Sources told The Times the crew did not station a “roaming night watchman” to patrol the boat while people slept. The owners of Truth Aquatics Inc. have meanwhile petitioned a judge, arguing they should not have to pay money to the families of the victims, citing a maritime statute from 1851.


George Malhiot, accredited marine surveyor for Ocean Marine Surveyors Inc., a company based in Newport Beach, CA that inspects and evaluates the condition of commercial and private vessels in marinas in both Northern and Southern California

Michael Vaughn, JD, maritime lawyer and head of the Maritime Law Center based in Huntington Beach 


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