15 killed in ferry capsizing off Sulawesi, Indonesia

15 killed in ferry capsizing off Sulawesi, Indonesia

Photo: Basarnas

Fifteen people were killed after a passenger ferry capsized and sank off Sulawesi Island, Indonesia, on Monday, July 24.

An official of national search and rescue (SAR) agency Basarnas said the unnamed wooden-hulled vessel capsized shortly after 00:00 local time on Monday before it could complete a one-kilometre voyage between two coastal villages in Southeast Sulawesi province.

The SAR effort, which also involved divers and the crews of some Good Samaritan fishing boats, led to the recovery of 15 bodies as well as the successful rescue of 33 of the ferry’s other occupants by first light on Monday. Some of the survivors were later brought to hospital to undergo treatment for minor injuries.

Officials immediately called off the search operation after they determined that everyone who was on the boat has been accounted for.

The incident has been blamed on overloading, as the vessel was built to transport no more than 20 people at a time.

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