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Clandestine Boat Sinks and at Least 10 People Die in Northern Brazil

08/24/2017 - 12h17

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MANOEL CARDOSO
FOLHA CONTRIBUTOR, IN SANTARÉM

MOISES SARRAF
FOLHA CONTRIBUTOR, IN BELÉM

Only 20 days after the accident that left nine people missing, another boat sank with some 70 people in the interior of the Brazilian state of Pará, in the Xingu river, on Tuesday night, August 22.

The Fire Department says that ten bodies have been found, including a baby. Up until Wednesday, 19 people had been rescued alive.

The boat operated clandestine passenger transportation, says Arcon, the state autarchy responsible for regulating intercity transportation. The agency also says that it had already notified the owner of the vessel after an operation in June; however, no measures were taken.

The Brazilian Navy says the boat was registered in the Port Authority of the city of Santarém, but even so, it had to be regularized by the state agency as well.

Many of those who often use this type of transportation in the region say the shipwreck was a tragedy foretold. In general boats in the region sail with full capacity.

The Capitão Ribeiro motorboat left Santarém on Monday night, August 21, for Vitória do Xingu, Pará, where passengers going to Altamira would embark. The fire department says the voyage lasts some 28 hours.

Authorities say that forty new passengers embarked at 6 p.m. on Tuesday in Porto de Moz.

The boat sank in Vila do Maruá, a region known as Ponta Grande, some forty kilometers from Porto de Moz at about 9:00 p.m., after the boat had sailed more than 350 kilometers.

The boat belonged to Almeida e Ribeiro Navegação LTDA company and its owner was onboard when it sank.

The Navy and the Police Department of Pará will begin proceedings for administrative and criminal inquiries to investigate the causes, circumstances and responsibilities for the accident.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

Read the article in the original language

Ulisses Gonçalves/AFP
Rescuers search on August 23, 2017 for bodies of missing passengers from a boat carrying 70 passengers that capsized Tuesday night while sailing on the Xingu river
Rescuers search on August 23, 2017 for bodies of missing passengers from a boat carrying 70 passengers that capsized Tuesday night while sailing on the Xingu river

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