The Latest: Officials say crew was asleep during fatal boat fire

National News

FBI agents walk past a memorial for the victims of the Conception dive boat on the Santa Barbara Harbor, as authorities issue a search warrant for the Truth Aquatics’ offices in Santa Barbara, Calif., Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019. The office was ringed in red “crime scene” tape as more than a dozen agents took photos and carried out boxes. Thirty-four people died when the Conception burned and sank before dawn on Sept. 2. They were sleeping in a cramped bunkroom below the main deck and their escape routes were blocked by fire. (AP Photo/Christian Monterrosa)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on a fatal boat fire that killed 34 people off the coast of Southern California (all times local):

11:20 a.m.

The National Transportation Safety Board says all six crew members were asleep when a fire broke out in a scuba diving boat off the coast of California, killing 34 people.

The NTSB released a two-page preliminary report Thursday. Authorities have said they were investigating if there was a night watchman on duty at the time.

The report comes a day after divers recovered the remains of the last missing victim, one of dozens who were trapped below deck.

The Coast Guard has released additional safety recommendations in the wake of the Sept. 2 tragedy, such as limiting the unsupervised charging of lithium-ion batteries and the use of power strips and extension cords.

The FBI, Coast Guard and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles are conducting a criminal investigation.


12:06 a.m.

The Coast Guard has issued additional safety recommendations in the aftermath of a fatal boat fire off the Southern California coast that killed 34 people.

The recommendations include limiting the unsupervised charging of lithium-ion batteries and the use of power strips and extension cords.

Officials expect to release a preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board on Thursday.

Investigators are delving into the cause of the Sept. 2 fire and working to recover the Conception amid an ongoing criminal probe conducted by the FBI, Coast Guard and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles.

Divers have recovered the remains of all 34 victims — 21 women and 13 men ranging from 16 to 62 years old — who apparently died of smoke inhalation as they were trapped below a raging fire.

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