Couple who rescued crew members from deadly boat fire recall horrific scene


A Central Valley couple who rescued 5 crew members from The Conception’s deadly fire on Monday are recounting the terrifying moments that lead to the death of multiple people. 

Bob Hansen said he and his wife Shirley Hansen were in a cove near Santa Cruz Island Monday morning. 

Approximately around 3:30 a.m., they heard calls for help. 

Hansen said upon waking up, he saw the inferno that was The Conception. 

“The entire boat was engulfed,” Hansen said. “From the bow to the stern, [thirty] foot flames, it was just terrible.”   

Hansen said the crew jumped off The Conception in just their underwear then used a dinghy line on the back of the boat to escape. 

Hansen said crew members told him they weren’t able to save anyone else on board because the escape route was on fire. 

“I feel so sad, you know?” Hansen said. “Had they been able to abandon boat, I have more than enough room to put the entire crew on board, entire guests and everything.” 

Hansen said one crew member had a broken leg and another had a sprained ankle. 

The 3 crew members who weren’t hurt went back on the dinghy to search for survivors with a flashlight, but they weren’t able to find anyone alive. 

A crew member told Hansen his girlfriend was sleeping below deck and he wasn’t able to help her. 

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