At least 22 dead in the sinking of a speedboat in the Brazilian state of Pará
Brazilian authorities confirmed on Sunday that two more bodies had been recovered after a boat sank on Thursday morning near Cotijuba Island, Belém, but it was not until the weekend that the accident was reported .
It was irregular intermunicipal transport without a passenger manifest. Therefore, the exact number of victims remains undetermined. The boat had left from a clandestine port of Cachoeira do Arari, in the Marajó archipelago, heading for Belém, the state government explained.
The search and these operations resumed early Sunday when two more bodies were found, said the Public Security Secretariat of Pará (Segup-PA). The number of bodies found so far is 22.
The body of a woman was seen from a helicopter on Sunday morning. Shortly after, another body, the sex of which was not confirmed, was pulled from inside the sinking ship.
So far, 13 women, 5 men, 3 children and one unidentified person have died. Of this total, 15 bodies were transferred to Marajó and five were handed over to relatives in Belém.
Sixty-five people survived the sinking. All were rescued in the first hours after the sinking of the boat. According to the government of Pará, they received psychosocial assistance and made statements to the authorities.
Nine state security force vessels, a helicopter from the para public security air group, as well as two boats and a navy plane took part in the rescue operations.
The search continues “until all persons sought by family members are located”, according to government sources.
The civil police have opened an investigation into the sinking. Those responsible for star Dona Lourdes II have not yet been found.
(Source: Brazil Agency)