Truth Aquatics, which owned and operated the dive boat Conception, has announced they are suspending operations for the foreseeable future.
The company made the announcement on their website.
The full statement can be read here:
With the continued calls and request for tours, we want to announce that we are officially suspending all operations of our Truth Aquatic fleet for a to-be-determined amount of time. We apologize to our customers who have been seeking reservations as well as those with reservations – and truly appreciate the expressions of support.
Right now we feel it’s important dedicate our entire efforts to make our boats models of new regulations that we will continue to work on with the NTSB and Coast Guard.
The investigation is ongoing by the National Transportation Safety Board and new regulations and requirements for similar vessels could be on the horizon.
The company owns two other vessels: Truth and Vision. Both boats have been docked following the fire on Conception which resulted in 34 deaths, including one crew member.
A preliminary investigation revealed that all the crew members were asleep when the fire broke out as passengers slept below deck. The complete report by the NTSB is expected to take over a year to complete.
The fire is also part of a criminal probe being conducted by federal authorities.
An Associated Press report revealed that investigators have not yet been able to determine the cause of the fire.
Truth Aquatics has been a major name in the dive boat community and the Santa Barbara community at large for decades. They have faced scrutiny as well as support in the weeks following the Conception tragedy.
Industry experts note that lobster season, which just opened, is typically a very busy time for Truth Aquatics and California dive operators.