Ferry cap­sizes in Philip­pines

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - WORLD -

MANILA, Philip­pines — A ferry car­ry­ing 189 peo­ple, in­clud­ing at least one Cana­dian, cap­sized Thurs­day min­utes as it left a cen­tral Philip­pine port in choppy wa­ters, leav­ing at least 36 dead and 26 oth­ers miss­ing, coast guard of­fi­cials said. They said the Cana­dian was among at least 127 peo­ple from the M/B Kim Nir­vana who were res­cued by nearby fish­ing boats and coast guard per­son­nel or swam to safety off Or­moc city on Leyte Is­land. The name and home­town of the Cana­dian were not im­me­di­ately avail­able. Coast guard spokesman Ar­mand Balilo said the wooden outrigger ferry was leav­ing Or­moc for the Camotes Is­lands, about 44 kilo­me­tres (27 miles) to the south, when it was lashed by strong waves. He said the cap­tain and some of the crew were res­cued and are in cus­tody pend­ing an in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Coast guard of­fi­cials and sur­vivors said it wasn’t im­me­di­ately clear what caused the 36-ton ferry, which was car­ry­ing a heavy cargo of con­struc­tion ma­te­ri­als and bags of rice, to over­turn. Sur­vivors told The As­so­ci­ated Press by cell­phone that the bow sud­denly rose from the wa­ter be­fore the ves­sel flipped over on one side, turn­ing it up­side down and trap­ping pas­sen­gers un­der­neath.

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