36 dead, 26 missing after banca capsized in C. Philippines
Updated: 2015-07-02 19:31
The Philippine Coast Guard rescues boat passengers after a ferry boat capsized in choppy waters, on Thursday, July 2, 2015, in Ornoc, Philippines. [Photo/IC]
MANILA - At least 36 people died and 26 others went missing after a passenger banca capsized in the waters off Ormoc City in central Philippines' Leyte province on Thursday afternoon, said Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).
Armando Balilo, PCG public affairs chief commander, said the passenger vessel M/B Nivrana-B was battered by huge waves and subsequently capsized about 200 meters off the port at around 12: 15 pm local time.
Balilo said the boat was carrying 189 people, including 173 passengers and 16 crew members. It was on the way to Camotes island in Cebu.
He added that the boat captain and some of the crewmen were among the survivors and are already in PCG's custody.
Search and rescue operations are still under way.