Volga Tragedy: Over 100 people missing as pleasure cruiser sinks in Russia (Video)
2011 07 11

By Andrew E. Kramer | NYTimes.com



A riverboat filled with families cruising on the Volga River sank on Sunday, and about 100 people were missing hours later, feeding fears that the episode could be the country’s worst such accident in recent history.

The riverboat, called the Bulgaria, had set out with 188 people on board for a cruise in the Kuybyshev Reservoir, a reach of the upper Volga that is dammed and forms a broad lake, according to state television.

Another Volga River tour boat, the Arabella, which was the first to arrive at the scene, found people clinging to debris and life vests, and pulled 82 survivors from the water and one woman who had drowned, Russian television reported.


Video from: YouTube.com

Initially, a local official in the Ministry of Emergency Situations said that aside from one woman who drowned, other vessels had picked up the remainder of the passengers and crew. But later Sunday, officials at the ministry’s headquarters in Moscow said 97 people were still missing after helicopters and motorboats had searched the river for hours. A plane with divers later took off from Moscow, suggesting a search for bodies rather than survivors.

In the confusion that followed the episode, the numbers on board and missing varied throughout the day.

The cause of the sinking was not yet clear. Large-scale accidents have sometimes led to anger at the government, especially when the country’s somewhat cavalier approach to safety has played a role. President Dmitri A. Medvedev spoke with rescue officials on Sunday afternoon, state television reported.

The tour company operating the Bulgaria had recently canceled trips because of mechanical troubles on the boat, and passengers from a previous outing had complained on a local Web site that the engines had broken down during their cruise.

The Bulgaria is a vintage 1955 riverboat with two decks, elegant brass fixtures and a ballroom, according to archival pictures shown on NTV television news.

River cruises are a beloved summer pastime for Russians, who sometimes book rides through the country’s vast inland waterways that last for weeks. Sleeping cabins are common, as are restaurants and onboard discos.

The boats often stop at uninhabited islands in the river so passengers can disembark and swim.

The Bulgaria sank about two miles from shore. Crews were searching nearby islands and the bank. Witnesses told Russian television that it was raining at the time of the sinking, but not particularly stormy. Television images showed choppy water and an overcast sky.

Interfax cited an unidentified survivor who went ashore when the Arabella docked in Kazan as saying that the boat was carrying many children, and that about 30 of them were gathered in an inside play room when the boat sank. “I’m afraid many of them died,” the survivor was quoted as saying.

The Volga River is crowded with boats in the summertime, including oil tankers and barges. Last year, a riverboat collided with a barge laden with sand north of Moscow. Then, all the passengers were rescued.

Article from: nytimes.com
Top Image: Roman Kruchinin/Reuters




Related Articles
Russia plane crash kills at least 44
Russia blames Polish crew in Kaczynski air crash
Tsunami Climbing: Incredible video of ship heading into wave in Japan
Congo boat catches fire, capsizes; 200 feared dead


Latest News from our Front Page

Why Can’t We Publish Addresses Of New York Times Reporters?
2014 11 28
New York Times reporters Julie Bosman and Campbell Robertson published the address of Darren Wilson in the New York Times so here are their addresses. GotNews.com strenuously objects to publishing the addresses of individuals who are being targeted with death threats. GotNews.com published the address of Ebola patient Nina Pham so that people could avoid going to her Dallas apartment. But it would ...
Terrorists? Interview with Varg Vikernes and Marie Cachet
2014 11 28
Marie Cachet and Varg Vikernes are what we call commonly ordinary people. However, for motives meanly political, the Ministry of the Interior decided to abuse its power to damage them ; "there is nothing more annoying than a low man placed in high position." (Roman saying) Today, Varg risks the eviction of the French territory without valid ground. Three very ...
The Coudenhove-Kalergi Plan - The Genocide Of The People Of Europe
2014 11 28
Mass immigration is a phenomenon, the causes of which are still cleverly concealed by the system, and the multicultural propaganda is trying to falsely portray it as inevitable. With this article we intend to prove once and for all, that this is not a spontaneous phenomenon. What they want to present as an inevitable outcome of modern life, is actually ...
Starbucks Supports Pro-GMO Company
2014 11 26
Another reason why you should not go to Starbucks. Starbucks has an image of being a socially responsible, environmentally friendly company (Really?). In 2013, 95 percent of their coffee was ethically sourced, and their goal is to reach 100 percent by 2015.1 Other goals include reducing water consumption by 25 percent in their company-operated stores by 20152 and mobilizing their employees and ...
Group Polarization and the Fad of Ethno-masochism
2014 11 26
From "Group polarization: A critical review and meta-analysis". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 6 50 (6): 1141--1151 The psychology of White self hatred. Political correctness IS a mental disorder. More: Group polarization: A critical review and meta-analysis. Isenberg, Daniel J. the paper Indoctrinate U Harvard Professor Noel Ignatiev talks about how to end the White race The History of Political Correctness The Narrative: The origins of Political ...
More News »