3 dead, 30 missing in Colombia boat capsize

Passengers are seen onboard the tourist boat Almirante in the Reservoir of Penol in Guatape municipality in Antioquia. Pic/AFP
Passengers are seen onboard the tourist boat Almirante in the Reservoir of Penol in Guatape municipality in Antioquia. Pic/AFP

At least three persons died and 30 went missing after a tourist boat carrying 150 passengers capsized in Colombia, the media reported.

"Three dead and 30 missing after boat sinks," the head of the Colombian police said about the accident which happened in the Penol-Guatape Reservoir in Colombia's northwest department of Antioquia, Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday. The accident mobilised Colombia's armed forces, Victoria Eugenia Ramirez, secretary of the government of Antioquia, told the media.

"We have a full operation underway. According to the company, 150 people were on board. The rescue operation includes the Interior Ministry, air force, army and police. The boat 'El Almirante' (The Admiral) did not crash into another, it just sank," Ramirez added.

"The Admiral," a four-level vessel, was taking visitors on a tour of the reservoir located 80 km east of Medellin, when it began to tilt sideways, then gradually sink. Video footage of the incident showed vessels of all sizes rushing to the site in an attempt to help the victims.

The injured were being taken to a hospital in the town of Guatape, as rescue workers continued to search for the missing passengers. "According to preliminary reports, the boat was at full (passenger) capacity, due to the fact that during holiday long weekends, thousands of tourists visit the town," RCN Radio said.

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