Tragedy at sea

Discussion in 'Surfing' started by nedsurf, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. nedsurf

    nedsurf Well-Known Member

    2,643
    650
    Jan 22, 2005
    If you haven't heard yet, you will soon. 34 dead on a boat fire off Santa Cruz island early this morning. Crew of 5 escaped, no comment at this time about that. I've been following this since early this am, hoping it would work out differently. This was a dive boat for recreational divers, anchored north side of Santa Cruz Island. Fire reported shortly after 0300 pacific time this morning.

    This is the recording of channel 16 emergency traffic, gut wrenching. Hits home on many levels, I do vessel inspections and this is the worst case scenario I can imagine. We may never know exactly what happened, but evidently it happened quickly and violently.

    If you have a boat, make sure your safety equipment is 100%. Multiple fire extinquishers is the cheapest insurance you can buy, know where they are. If you have an enclosed gasoline engine consider getting an automatic halon fire supression system. If you have PFDs in the plastic zipper bag that they often come in either lubricate and operate the zipper every 6 months, or find another place to keep them. Those zippers lock up around salt air and you cannot open them. Coast uGard states they must be "readily accessible", don't bury them in some locker where you can't grab them in an emergency. Get an inspection, stay safe

    https://nypost.com/2019/09/02/chilling-distress-call-in-fatal-santa-cruz-island-boat-fire-revealed/
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
  2. cheyneskeezer

    cheyneskeezer Well-Known Member

    551
    852
    May 30, 2017
    Long Beach CA
    Total bummer saw this this am.. happened early most where probably sleeping below
     
  3. Surfnfish

    Surfnfish Well-Known Member

    1,402
    1,432
    Feb 6, 2015
    Devils Lake, Oregon Coast
    ran an 85' offshore albacore boat in the late 70's that slept 28 passengers plus crew...no way out of the below decks sleeping quarters other then the single stairs down..only an explosive ignition could fully engulf a boat that quickly, perhaps LNG supply to the cook stoves..wasn't the fuel tanks, diesel is essentially non-flammable...no one should ever have to die like that...
     
  4. nedsurf

    nedsurf Well-Known Member

    2,643
    650
    Jan 22, 2005
    Exactly, a leak associated with the galley is very likely. Sounds like they may have started breakfast prep.
     
  5. Bruce Fowler

    Bruce Fowler Well-Known Member

    510
    696
    Jul 28, 2018
    California
    Totally agree. However, that doesn't stop clueless people from making assumptions. Here was my FB post last night:
    Like her or not Diane Feinstein's "calling for an investigation" is merely political posturing. An investigation on this is standard fare. As far as calling into question the surviving crew and the 911 operator's questions being asked of the crew member calling Mayday......... it's clear that there is little understanding from her or the media that the vast majority of dive boats have similar blueprints: closely grouped bunks below deck with a single exit. The crew sleep in the pilot house or up on deck. The guy calling Mayday was most likely surrounded by fire & was lucky to escape with his life. I am sure the fire investigators will conclude the fire was "explosive" and to add to that, scuba tanks are essentially individual bombs ready to go off given the volatile situation.
    Those poor souls didn't stand a chance.
     
  6. Surfnfish

    Surfnfish Well-Known Member

    1,402
    1,432
    Feb 6, 2015
    Devils Lake, Oregon Coast
    yep...both sides of the aisle dominated by a handful of ancients whose only real goal is to maintain their death grip on power and position...some to feed their egos, others their corporate masters....

    the one thing about glass boats - get them up to temp and they are torches, especially the ones with the glass/foam sandwich construction which a lot of the older inshore overnighter dive boats tend to be...cheaper to build...
     
  7. Bruce Fowler

    Bruce Fowler Well-Known Member

    510
    696
    Jul 28, 2018
    California
    A close friend worked on the boats (three) owned by the same people. Really good people that are diligent, responsible folks. They are mortified by this event. There are gazillions of people that have been out on the boat and have had wonderful experiences. The islands are still pretty pristine for being so close to humanity. I spent a lot of years picking the days I'd run my Whaler out there for day tripping or sleepovers, and collected a paycheck working on a couple different Radons tending ab then diving urchins. Heaven on Earth out there with some awesome surf spots.
     
    pintail likes this.
  8. nedsurf

    nedsurf Well-Known Member

    2,643
    650
    Jan 22, 2005
    Nitrox diving offered also, so oxygen tanks and refill capability on board.

    What an unholy nightmare - RIP
     
  9. Bruce Fowler

    Bruce Fowler Well-Known Member

    510
    696
    Jul 28, 2018
    California
  10. nedsurf

    nedsurf Well-Known Member

    2,643
    650
    Jan 22, 2005
    This is what I have gathered, but it is all subject to verification by investigators. Apparently the fire started in or very quickly spread to the galley. All passenger bunks are on the deck below the galley. All passageways/exits from the lower sleeping deck exit into the galley area, not to an outside access. The fire and smoke may have effectively blocked the exits, there is no door on the main stairway.

    The TV talking heads are already condeming the crew for not saving the passengers. Way too early to guess if they could have or not. One thing I would like to see is toxicology tests for surviving crew members to see if they were impaired in any way.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice