Salvage Efforts to Recover Conception Dive Boat Off Santa Cruz Island Suspended Due to Weather, Safety Concerns

The salvage operation to raise the dive boat Conception off coast of Santa Cruz Island has been temporarily suspended.(Credit: U.S. Coast Guard)

The salvage operation to raise the dive boat Conception off coast of Santa Cruz Island has been temporarily suspended.(Credit: U.S. Coast Guard)

The search for the final victim of a boat fire off of Santa Cruz Island was suspended until early next week because of gusty winds, rough seas and safety concerns.

Authorities said Saturday they also suspended efforts to salvage the Conception because the conditions were expected to last through the weekend.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Lt. Erik Raney says the Conception has been secured underwater, where it will remain until it is safe to resume the salvage operation.

Thirty-four scuba divers died when the boat caught fire and sank before dawn on Monday. They were sleeping in a cramped bunkroom below the main deck and their escape routes were blocked by fire.

Medical examiners say the victims appear to have died from smoke inhalation.

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