Over 30 trapped as boat catches fire off California

(iStock)
(iStock)

Rescuers were scrambling Monday to reach more than 30 people who were sleeping below deck when their scuba-diving boat caught fire off the California coast, with reports of "numerous fatalities."

A major rescue operation was underway for the dozens of people trapped aboard the 75-foot (22-meter) boat, near Santa Cruz Island off the coast from Los Angeles, the Coast Guard tweeted.

Bill Nash, a spokesperson for Ventura County, told CNN many people were feared dead.

"It's a large boat, and we know we have numerous fatalities. I don't have an exact number," Nash said.

But US Coast Guard chief Aaron Bemis, also on CNN, said: "Right now we can't confirm any fatalities."

"The five crew members were able to disembark because they were in the main cabin," he said. "The 34 passengers were below decks. The report we got was they were trapped by the fire."

"The fire was so intense that even after it was put out, we're not able to actually embark the vessel and, you know, look for survivors at this point."

"It's still ongoing."

GET THE NEWS at your fingertips and download the News24 app for Android here now. Get it for your iPhone here.


We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
When assisting your child with remote learning this year, did you:
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Follow the school's comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) curriculum?
13% - 68 votes
Adjust the CSE curriculum to suit the family's morals?
27% - 138 votes
Ignore the schools CSE programme and do your own teaching?
60% - 313 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
15.26
(-0.33)
ZAR/GBP
20.30
(+0.07)
ZAR/EUR
18.24
(-0.67)
ZAR/AUD
11.27
(-0.69)
ZAR/JPY
0.15
(-0.48)
Gold
1784.10
(-1.34)
Silver
22.62
(-2.42)
Platinum
963.00
(+0.49)
Brent Crude
47.75
(-1.52)
Palladium
2425.50
(+2.45)
All Share
57822.50
(-0.17)
Top 40
53021.58
(-0.12)
Financial 15
11577.71
(-0.58)
Industrial 25
79894.95
(-0.12)
Resource 10
52804.55
(+0.03)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo