Divers See Bodies Floating Inside Capsized Ferry


 
 

Paul Alexander | | Tuesday, June 24, 2008


MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine officials say divers have managed to get inside an upside-down ferry but have found only bodies and no survivors.

Philippine coast guard officials made the announcement three days after the vessel capsized with more than 800 people aboard during a powerful typhoon.

Navy spokesman Lt. Col. EdgardArevalo told dzBB radio today that most of the bodies were floating inside, trapped when the ship suddenly tilted and went belly up Saturday.

He would not speculate on whether anyone still might be found alive - saying the ship's interior was too dark to see how many bodies were there - but indicated that the time since the disaster made it unlikely.

Experts had been studying the ferry's schematics in case they have to drill an access hole.

On Sunday, divers heard no response when they hammered on the hull, but officials refused to give up.

We're not ruling out that somebody there is still alive, coast guard chief Adm. Wilfredo Tamayo said. You can never tell.

Hundreds of people were feared to have been trapped when the ship suddenly tilted and went belly up Saturday at the height of the powerful storm that left 163 people dead in flooded communities in the central Philippines.

All that was visible Monday of the 23,824-ton, seven-story Princess of the Stars was one end poking out of the waters off Sibuyan island, still churning after Typhoon Fengshen's full force swept through.

Only 38 ferry survivors have been found, including 28 who drifted at sea for more than 24 hours, first in a life raft, then in life jackets, before they were found Sunday about 80 miles to the north in eastern Quezon province.

A U.S. Navy ship carrying search-and-rescue helicopters was headed in, and a P-3 maritime surveillance plane also was being dispatched. We want to express our condolences to the Philippine people, State Department spokesman Tom Casey said.

Officials initially reported 747 passengers and crew were aboard the ferry, but said Monday that it was carrying about 100 more. Capacity was listed as 1,992 people.

The coast guard said it was checking a survivor's report that at least one group of people - some dead, some alive - had been spotted bobbing in the sea.

While some relatives tearfully waited for news, others angrily questioned why the ship was allowed to leave Manila late Friday for a 20-hour trip to Cebu with a typhoon approaching. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said the ferry never should have departed. Sulpicio Lines said it sailed with coast guard approval. The government ordered the company to suspend services pending an investigation and a check of its other ships' seaworthiness.

survivors

Only 38 ferry survivors have been found, including 28 who drifted at sea for more than 24 hours, first in a life raft, then in life jackets, before they were found Sunday about 80 miles to the north in eastern Quezon province.

philippine coast guard | the associated press Part of the bottom of the sunken Princess of the Stars is seen in the central Philippines on Monday. Some people are questioning why the ship was allowed to depart with a typhoon looming.




Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Natural Disasters

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS





 

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Innovation & Progress

Follow in the footsteps of these inspirational leaders of EMS.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Image Trend: ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

ImageTrend just challenged NEMSIS TAC and a couple others.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Where in the World of EMS is A.J.?

A.J. Heightman participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in a big way!
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Details on Discipline Released in D.C. Investigation

Interim fire chief claims punishment was not severe enough.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Kentucky Firefighters Recovering from Injuries

One of the four remains in critical condition.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Numerous Rescues during Arizona Flooding

Severe flooding across the region prompted several rescues.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Colorado Hiker Rescue

Injured hiker spent three hours in a crevice.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Airlift at Swiss Train Derailment

Helicopters used to help reach the injured.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >