Coast Guard Sued over Conception Fire

Coast Guard Sued by Families of the 34 Victims in Conception Dive Boat Fire | Military.com.

The families of the 34 people who died in the Conception dive boat fire off the California coast in 2019 are suing the U.S. Coast Guard for allowing the tour boat to operate despite having faulty electrical and safety systems, the complaint alleges

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https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USDHSCG/bulletins/2ef74a9

ALAMEDA, Calif. — Coast Guard personnel throughout the Eleventh Coast Guard District have implemented an initiative that enhances underway presence and improves safety aboard small passenger vessels operating off the California coast.

The safety compliance checks are being conducted underway on smaller, U.S. inspected passenger vessels to ensure continued regulatory compliance while vessels are conducting operations with paying passengers aboard.

“Our intent with these safety compliance checks is to bridge gaps that were identified following the fire onboard the passenger vessel Conception which resulted in the tragic deaths of 34 people,” said Rear Admiral Brian Penoyer, the Eleventh District commander. “We discovered that there are a number of operational requirements that are impossible to verify during a dockside annual inspection. The Coast Guard has been and continues to take deliberate steps to improve the safety of small passenger vessels in order to prevent future loss of life.”

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We have a saying: When the calf has drowned the well is filled up.

That’s like closing the barn door after that horse ran out. 34 people have died. The 5 survivors will have to live with this the rest of their lives.
All of them, all 39 individuals, their families will all be suffering this tragedy forever. Husbands, wife’s, children - sons & daughters, nephews, nieces, aunts, uncles, grand parents, grand children, the list goes on & on.

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The level of industry oversight from the Coast Guard is a result of seeking a balance between two forces.

On the one side is pressure from owners who prefer to maximize profits and minimize expenses. On the other hand the Coast Guard faces pressure from the public, hence political pressure after highly publicized incidents like the Conception fire.

I’ve no idea about the chances of the success of this lawsuit but it is exactly the kind of publicity the Coast Guard wishes to avoid. Even if the lawsuit fails it may in fact help shift balance or cause the CG to become more competent wrt efficient regulations to both increase safety and minimize impact on the bottom line.

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all for a Walmart $4.44 smoke detector…

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Yeah, right. What part of not recognizing that a little tiny overhead panel above one bunk is hardly an adequate emergency egress? Maybe for some farm boy from Iowa who never set foot on a boat before being blessed as a safety inspector its mere existence becomes sufficient just shows how far removed the coasties have become from the reality of vessel operations.

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And let’s not forget not one swingin’ dick designated as a night watch/rover. Like I said in one of the previous threads…just one burned out coffee drunk deckhand binge watching hulu in the galley and occasionally walking around half asked doing rounds could have averted this horrible tragedy.

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I’d put my money on a smoke detector screaming when it goes off rather than your guy described above…
Cheaper and more reliable and you can have more than one.