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Four Children, Two Adults Killed in Ferry Capsizing in Sri Lanka

sri lankan navy
Crowd gathers to watch rescue workers at the scene of the sinking (Sri Lankan Navy)

By The Maritime Executive 11-23-2021 10:01:00

[Brief] At least six people were killed Tuesday when a ferry capsized in Sri Lanka, putting dozens of passengers into the water. 

The ferry flipped over at about 0730 hours while crossing a lagoon near the town of Kinniya, on the eastern side of the island. The ferry was in use on the route because a bridge had been closed down for repairs, a local resident told the AP.

Many of the passengers were children on their way to school, according to local reports. Twenty survivors were rescued and six bodies have been recovered, including four deceased children. At least nine additional children have been hospitalized, including one girl in intensive care, according to the Daily Mirror.

Sri Lanka's Navy deployed rescue divers to the scene in an attempt to find more survivors, but the effort has since been suspended. 

After the accident, local residents attacked the house of a local member of parliament, MP M.S. Thowfeek, claiming that government officials had not taken proper safety precautions during the bridge shutdown. Video obtained by local media showed the MP's front gate had been broken down and that the front entrance had been badly damaged by the crowd.