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Tourists Jump into Shark-Infested Waters After Galapagos Cruise Boat Catches Fire



A group of tourists was forced to jump overboard in the dark of night after a fire broke out on a small cruise boat in the Galapagos Islands last week.

At least 16 passengers lept into the shark-infested waters to escape the flames and heavy smoke.

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“I didn’t know if I was supposed to stay on board a burning boat or jump into the water with sharks,” said Dana Kirk, a nurse from Huntington Beach, California.

ABC7 Investigative Producer Lisa Bartley was also on board and said the group knew that there were sharks in the water because they had been swimming with them earlier in the day.

To make matters worse, the two life rafts didn’t inflate at first, prompting passengers and some crew members to begin swimming toward the nearest island. The rafts eventually inflated and the group was rescued by a sailboat several hours after evacuating the burning boat.

“Once we got in the life raft, I knew we were going to be safe,” added Kirk.

Fortunately, all passengers and crew escaped unscathed.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation but the boat has since been repaired and has returned to service, the tour company said.

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