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Seven dead, 11 missing in Bali ferry sinking

Seven dead, 11 missing in Bali ferry sinking

A relative embraces a survivor of the sinking ferry KMP Yunice at an evacuation point in Banyuwangi, East Java, Indonesia, Jun 30, 2021. (Photo: AP)

DENPASAR: Indonesian rescuers were searching for 11 people still missing after a passenger ferry sank off the coast of Bali in rough seas, killing at least seven, authorities said Wednesday (Jun 30).

Dozens of survivors were plucked from the water on Tuesday evening after the KMP Yunicee, carrying 57 passengers and crew, went down near Gilimanuk port at the western end of the holiday island. The ferry had been travelling across a narrow strait from Java island.

Many of those rescued were unconscious after drifting in choppy waters for hours.

But 11 people remained missing on Wednesday while authorities confirmed that they had pulled seven dead from the waters, updating an earlier toll.

"We are still searching for the missing," said Bali search and rescue chief Gede Darmada.

"Last night, the rescue was hampered by low visibility and high waves."

Two tug boats and two inflatable boats have been searching for the missing people since Tuesday night, battling waves up to 4m high in the overnight darkness.

Indonesian Navy personnel prepare for a search rescue operation for victims of the sinking ferry KMP Yunice near Gilimanuk Port on Bali Island, Indonesia, Jun 30, 2021. (Photo: AP/Fauzy Chaniago)

It was unclear what caused the accident. 

Marine accidents are common in Indonesia, an archipelago of more than 17,000 islands, where many use ferries and other boats to travel despite poor safety standards.

In 2018, about 160 people drowned when a ferry sank into the depths of one of the world's deepest lakes on Sumatra island.

And more than 300 people are estimated to have drowned in 2009 when a ferry sank between Sulawesi and Borneo.

Survivors of a ferry sinking rest after being evacuated in Banyuwangi, East Java, Indonesia, Jun 29, 2021. (Photo: AP)
Source: AGENCIES/zl

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