Over 30 dead in Bangladesh ferry disaster

More than 30 people were killed in a collision between a passenger ferry and a cargo vessel in central Bangladesh on Sunday, April 4.

An official of the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority told local media that the double-decker ferry Sabit Al Hasan was sailing on the Shitalakhsya River near the country’s capital of Dhaka when it was struck from behind by a larger cargo vessel, causing it to capsize and sink, at around 18:00 local time on Sunday.

Police officials said the cargo vessel left the scene immediately afterward.

Search and rescue (SAR) teams from various local groups eventually arrived at the scene to assist those on the capsized ferry.

Eleven survivors were pulled from the water within the first few hours following the sinking. Three were brought to hospital to undergo treatment for their injuries while the remaining eight received first aid on-site.

The SAR teams also recovered the bodies of 34 deceased individuals from inside the overturned ferry and in the surrounding waters in a retrieval operation that was hampered by bad weather and that lasted well into the evening of Monday, April 5.

An unknown number of people who were also on board the ferry remain unaccounted for, though emergency responders said some of them may have been able to swim to safety on the riverbanks following the capsizing.

The ferry was reportedly carrying around 50 passengers when the incident occurred.

The search for the missing individuals was called off on Monday evening after authorities concluded it is unlikely that any more bodies will be found.

Local salvage teams have since raised Sabit Al Hasan‘s wreck out of the water as authorities launch an investigation into the incident.

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