At least eight people have been killed after two boats capsized off the California coast, said emergency services. A search began after the boats got in trouble off Black’s Beach, San Diego. A 911 caller told emergency services she had been on a boat with eight people that made it to shore, but another vessel, carrying eight to 10 people, had capsized.
San Diego Lifeguard chief James Gartland called it one of the state’s worst maritime smuggling tragedies. Officials said they had no information about the nationalities of the victims but they were all adults. One San Diego police officer informed local media the 911 caller had said she was Mexican.
Carlos González Gtez, the Mexican consul general in San Diego, twitted that his office “laments the maritime tragedy” and is “working to identify people of Mexican origin and assist their families”. Emergency responders from several agencies found two overturned boats with bodies spread over an area of 400 yards (366m). The search operation was suspended on Sunday evening. It was unclear what caused the incident but Mr Gartland described the area as “hazardous” due to sand bars and in-shore rip currents.