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California boat company suspends tours after fatal fire

The 75' Conception, based in Santa Barbara Harbor, caught fire early 9/2 while anchored off Santa Cruz Island, multiple agencies responded. 5 people were rescued and 34 are missing.

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — The owner of a scuba diving boat company has announced an indefinite suspension of its fleet in the wake of a boat fire off the Southern California coast that killed 34 people.

Truth Aquatics Inc. says Tuesday on its Facebook page that the company will “dedicate our entire efforts to make our boats models of new regulations” in collaboration with the Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board.

The company says customers have been requesting tours since the Sept. 2 fire and the owners appreciate the support.

Authorities are investigating the fatal fire aboard the Conception in criminal and safety investigations. While NTSB Member Jennifer Homendy has expressed concern about the Conception’s escape hatch, Coast Guard records show the boat passed its two most recent inspections.

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