California boat fire victims likely died of smoke inhalation
The 34 people killed when a dive boat caught fire and sank off the California coast likely died from smoke inhalation and may have been dead before flames consumed their bunk area, the local sheriff said on Friday.
The disclosure raises questions over whether crew members, who told investigators they tried desperately to rescue the passengers in their below-decks sleeping quarters, were already too late to save them by the time they were alerted to the blaze.
Divers have so far recovered the burned remains of 33 victims, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown told a news conference. Crews hoped to find the final body when the 75-foot (23-meter) Conception was raised from the floor of the Pacific Ocean as early as Friday.
7th September 2019