SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has called for an interagency investigation into the fatal fire aboard a Santa Barbara dive boat.
In a release posted to her website on Monday afternoon, Feinstein described the tragedy as "inconceivable" due to all the safety regulations currently in place.
The dive boat Conception sunk 20 yards off of Santa Cruz Island early Monday morning after the boat was overtaken by a fire. Five crew members were able to escape the boat, but dozens of passengers staying in the lower deck are unaccounted for, with many feared dead.
Feinstein is calling on multiple agencies to investigate the circumstances of the deadly fire and how future incidents can be prevented.
"The Coast Guard, along with officials from Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, are already hard at work. Once personnel from the NTSB and FBI join the effort tomorrow, we must learn as much as possible about how this happened and how future tragedies can be prevented," Feinstein said in a press release.
Feinstein said answers were needed in regard to safety regulations, including whether or not all regulations were followed and if there was a need for additional regulations to prevent future tragedies.
Feinsten also said she had questions about the training of the crew and why the surviving crew members were unable to alert or help rescue any of the trapped passengers.
"A tragedy of this nature is simply unimaginable, and my thoughts and prayers are with the families of those involved. My thanks to the Coast Guard and local first responders for their diligence. Hopefully the lessons learned from this disaster will ensure that no more lives are needlessly lost."
To read the entire release from Senator Feinstein, click here.