Pathein wedding boat toll rises to 30


YANGON — Rescuers Sunday found more bodies from a boat accident in Ayeyarwady Region that has now claimed the lives of at least 30 people, most of them guests returning from a wedding.

The boat, called “Silver Star” in Burmese, sank Friday evening in a river near Pathein, a port city west of Yangon.

It was believed to be carrying around 60 passengers when it collided with another vessel in the dark.

Rescuers pulled 21 bodies from the river on Saturday and have since discovered more victims.

Support more independent journalism like this. Sign up to be a Frontier member.

“We got nine dead bodies, three men and six women, today,” a police officer at Pathein police station told AFP, asking not to be named.

It is unlikely there are many more victims to be found. On Saturday evening a local MP said nine people were missing. 

Local media photos showed frenzied scenes as rescuers worked throughout the early hours of Saturday to wheel stretchers away from the river and lay bodies onshore.

Vessels ferrying people along the coastline and rivers are often dangerously overcrowded, and accidents can have staggering death tolls. It can also take several days for all bodies to be retrieved.

Last October 73 people, including many teachers and students, drowned when their overloaded vessel capsized on the Chindwin River.

Around 60 people died in March 2015 when their ferry sank in rough waters off the coast of Rakhine State.

More stories

Latest Issue

Stories in this issue
Myanmar enters 2021 with more friends than foes
The early delivery of vaccines is one of the many boons of the country’s geopolitics, but to really take advantage, Myanmar must bury the legacy of its isolationist past.
Will the Kayin BGF go quietly?
The Kayin State Border Guard Force has come under intense pressure from the Tatmadaw over its extensive, controversial business interests and there’s concern the ultimatum could trigger fresh hostilities in one of the country’s most war-torn areas.

Support our independent journalism and get exclusive behind-the-scenes content and analysis

Stay on top of Myanmar current affairs with our Daily Briefing and Media Monitor newsletters.

Sign up for our Frontier Fridays newsletter. It’s a free weekly round-up featuring the most important events shaping Myanmar