31 Killed, 130 Rescued From Sinking Ferry In Indonesia

| July 4 , 2018 , 15:23 IST

At least 31 people have been killed and 130 passengers rescued after a ferry capsized off of an Indonesian island on Tuesday night. The passengers were rescued on early Wednesday morning, after they had spent a harrowing night on board the sinking ferry off the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.

According to reports, the Sulawesi ferry began sinking on Tuesday afternoon in the rough seas. In an attempt to save lives, the captain of the ferry steered it towards the shore, grounding it approximately 200-300 meters (985-655 feet) from land.

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Chief of the South Sulawesi search and rescue agency Amiruddin specified that there were 164 people on board the vessel including crew, out of which 130 survived.

“We are still searching for three others who we strongly believe are still inside the ship,” Amiruddin said.

Photos released by the National Disaster Mitigation Agency depicted passengers clinging on to the sides of the listing vessel using ropes hung over its side. Most of the people on the ferry appeared to have been wearing life jackets.

Apart from passengers, the 48.5-meter-long vessel was also carrying several dozen vehicles including a bus and trucks. The vessel was travelling to Selayar island, when it began taking on water just south of the main Sulawesi island.

In Indonesia, an archipelago of more than 17,000 islands, ferry tragedies are common with weak enforcement of safety regulations often to blame.