All 34 passengers who were sleeping on the boat below The Deck during the fire were killed, say US authorities. Twenty bodies of them have since been recovered, the search for the remaining fourteen bodies has been stopped for the time being.
The US Coast Guard assumes that the bodies of the last missing are aboard the sunken ship. Divers are said to have seen some bodies near the wreck.
A total of 39 people were on board, including six crew members. Five of them were awake when the fire broke out and could bring themselves to safety.
The identity of the victims will have to be traced through DNA testing. The fire burned the bodies in such a way that only the sex of the persons could be determined; the authorities are said to be eleven women and nine men.
It is still not known how the more than 20 meter long vessel could catch fire. The coast guard was informed of the outbreak of fire in the night from Sunday to Monday at 3 a.m. in an emergency call, but help was no longer at that time.
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