Shipwrecked Ferry to Zanzibar: 62 Dead and Hope for 83 Missing

9 years, 6 months ago - July 20, 2012
Thirty-eight people were killed, 107 missing and 145 were saved, among the 290 passengers'' a ferry that sank Wednesday, July 18, 2012, between Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar.

At least 62 bodies were recovered and there was no hope of finding survivors Thursday among the 83 missing at least Wednesday after the sinking of a ferry off the island Tanzanian semi-autonomous Zanzibar, according to the spokesman of the local police.

According to the spokesman, Mohamed Mhina, 145 survivors were saved by rescuers. The authorities of the popular tourist islands, based on the manifest, believe that the ferry was carrying 290 people, but it is not uncommon for this type of boats are overloaded and that some passengers are not registered.

"Operations continue" at the scene of the wreck, told AFP Mohamed Mhina, excluding the possibility of finding more survivors more than 30 hours after the wreck.

According to authorities, 250 adults, 31 children and nine crew members had boarded in Dar es Salaam on the MV Skagit, which capsized Wednesday in mid-day, half a dozen kilometers off the coast of the island main Unguja and about twenty miles from the port city of Zanzibar, its destination.

An unknown number of tourists had boarded.

At least two Belgians and four Germans were among the survivors, said their respective foreign ministries in Brussels and Berlin.

"The information we are incomplete but, for now, we have no indication that there would be other Belgian victims," said a spokesman for the Belgian Ministry, Joren Vandeweyer, cited by agency Belga. 

France's embassy in Dar es Salaam said Thursday told AFP that "there is no confirmed presence of the French" on the ferry when the accident occurred.

Omari Abdallah, hospital administrator Mnazi Mmoja Zanzibar city, said the school had treated two Israelis and two Germans who have since left the archipelago.

He added that the body of a "mzungu" ("white" in Swahili) was unidentified in the morgue of the hospital. Wednesday, Transportation Minister of Zanzibar, Hamad Masoud Hamad, stated that "two Europeans" were among the dead, without specifying their nationality.

The roads were almost deserted and shops closed for most, Thursday, the first three days of mourning decreed by the authorities of the archipelago after the second maritime accident in less than a year.

On the night of 9 to 10 September 2011, the ferry Islander Spicy, overloaded, was wrecked between two islands of Zanzibar, killing 203 of more than 800 passengers, sparking outrage from the opposition and anger among families victims.

An investigation to determine the exact causes of the sinking, said Wednesday Mhina who participated in rescue operations. According to him, "the weather was very bad, there were big waves and a strong wind blowing at a speed of 120 km / h" at the time of the accident.

Text by lexpress.mu

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