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Posted by admin on 2019-01-12 in 上海性息 with No Comments


The 24,000-tonne Princess of Stars capsized off the central Philippine island of Sibuyan on Saturday, amid waves as big as houses.

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Survivors said it went down in a matter of minutes, trapping many people inside.

Authorities are not hopeful of finding anyone alive, trapped in air pockets inside the ship, which came to rest upside down, with its stern resting on the sea bed and the underside of its bow sticking out of the water.

“The divers are looking at entering from underneath. They are also looking at accessing the ship through points on the side; doors and windows,” said Vice-Admiral Wilfredo Tamayo, head of the coast guard.

If they are unable to enter the ship that way, they will attempt to drill through the side of the vessel, but experts say this plan is complicated by the amount of fuel on board.

“That is something that should be carefully planned,” Vice-Admiral Tamayo said.

A US military ship, the USNS Stockham, with helicopters on board, is on hand to help with rescue efforts.

Maritime rules under review

Only about 33 of the 864 people on board are known to have survived the disaster, and as the days pass, the likelihood of finding others alive on remote islands nearby fades.

Typhoon Fengshen, which has weakened to a tropical storm over the South China Sea, pounded the Philippines at the weekend with gusts of up to 195 km/h.

Aside from the ferry disaster, possibly the worst in the Philippines in over 20 years, more than 200 people were killed, largely by drowning, in a torrent of floods in the south and centre of the archipelago.

The sixth typhoon to hit the archipelago this year badly damaged the country's already shoddy infrastructure, washing away thousands of homes as well as roads and bridges.

Shipping tragedies are a common event in the Philippines, an archipelago of over 7,000 islands where safety rules are poorly implemented and substandard vessels ply dangerous waters.

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, on a state visit to the United States, has ordered a review of maritime regulations and authorities have suspended the operations of the ferry's owner, Sulpicio Lines, which has been involved in three other major shipping disasters in the past 21 years.

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