2019 Press Releases

In a press briefing held at Sheriff's Headquarters this afternoon, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown announced that all 34 victims of the Conception dive boat disaster have been identified.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff – Coroner's Office has confirmed the identities of 5 additional victims who died when the dive boat Conception caught fire in the early morning hours of Monday, September 2nd in the waters off of Santa Cruz Island.

Leak Detection Sensors at Gas Station Were Disabled

Salvage efforts to recover the Conception were suspended yesterday afternoon as winds, swells and currents increased Friday afternoon. This weather pattern is expected to remain through the weekend.

In a press conference held earlier today, Sheriff Bill Brown provided an update on the efforts to identify the victims of the Conception Incident.

Due to the critical fire weather today into Saturday and Sunday, we have approval from Cal Fire to upstaff the following on 9/6/19 through 0800 on Monday 9/9/19

At 2:30 p.m. on September 5, 2019, Santa Barbara County proclaimed a local emergency in response to the Conception dive boat incident. At approximately 3:30 a.m., Monday, September 2, the U.S. Coast Guard and partnering agencies responded to a vessel fire off the north shore of Santa Cruz Island near Platt's Harbor in Santa Barbara County. 


Dive teams from the Unified Command continued recovery efforts for the last missing person from the dive boat Conception Thursday afternoon. Crews are utilizing a wide range of equipment including Remote Operated Vessels and side-scan sonar to assist with search efforts.

Eighteen years ago, on September 11, 2001, the United States was attacked when terrorists crashed planes into the World Trade Center in New York City, into the Pentagon in Washington DC and another in a Pennsylvania field.

Local organizations are coming together to host a vigil for the community to gather, grieve, show support and be in company with one another.