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BREAKING: Ten dead in Lake Victoria boat cruise accident

FILE PHOTO: Police marine unit in action. They have today rescued 40 on Lake Victoria

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT & AFP | Uganda Police has confirmed that at least 10 people drowned when a boat cruise capsized on Lake Victoria. They have rescued over 40, but reports indicate over 100 were on the boat ride from KK Beach in Mukono to nearby Mutima Island.

There was no immediate information on the number of passengers aboard the vessel, nor the reason why it sunk. “Our marine unit teams have rescued over 40 people alive. Ten confirmed dead. The rescue mission is still on to find others,” said Uganda police spokesman Emilian Kayima.

Prince Daudi Kintu Wasajja , musician Irene Nambiru and businessman Freeman Kiyimba were said to be among the survivors rescued.

As recently as September an overloaded ferry overturned in Lake Victoria, off the Tanzania coast, killing over 200 people. Lake Victoria is the biggest lake in Africa.

DETAILS TO FOLLOW

VIDEO before the accident

After the accident, an eyewitness

Sad stories start pouring in………….

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Lake Victoria, a tragic history

➡ Biggest on African continent, 70,000 square km

➡ Every year, 3,000 & 5,000 fishermen die

➡ Sept 20, 2018, MV Nyerere sinks, 200+ die

➡May 21, 1996 MV Bukoba sinks, 800 drown

FILE PHOTO: Passengers board canoes on Lake Victoria

Lake Victoria is the biggest lake in Africa and crossed every day by scores of boats that are often poorly maintained and overloaded, making them vulnerable to poor weather.

Here is some background on the vast lake where more than 200 people drowned last month when a ferry capsized.

– Largest in Africa –

With a surface of 70,000 square kilometres (27,000 square miles), oval-shaped Lake Victoria is the biggest on the African continent.

Shared by Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya, it provides the livelihood for some 30 million people, many of them poor and dependent on fishing.

The lake has however seen a dramatic fall in water levels since 2003 and increased pollution.

English explorer John Hanning Speke named it after Britain’s Queen Victoria after he reached it in 1858 during an expedition.

– Regular deadly sinkings –

Many of the ferries, fishing boats and other vessels that cross the vast lake daily, linking its ports and islands, are in poor condition or overloaded.

Navigation can also become as dangerous as on the high seas when the weather deteriorates, with fierce storms often striking.

Sinkings occur regularly and can leave many dead. There are often no life jackets onboard and a large part of the population cannot swim.

Since 2000 there have been a dozen sinkings on the lake with heavy death tolls.

Around 20 people were killed in December 2016 when their boat overturned, and in March 2012, a boat believed to be carrying around 60 people capsized leaving only two survivors.

– 800 drown in 1996 –

The deadliest ever was on May 21, 1996, when a Tanzanian passenger and cargo ferry, the MV Bukoba, went down about nine kilometres (5.5 miles) from the town of Mwanza.

More than 800 people were believed to have drowned, according to a toll released by the Red Cross.

The ferry was unseaworthy and was carrying hundreds more than its capacity of 441 passengers when it sank in 30 metres (100 feet) of water.

– Worsening weather risk –

Every year, between 3,000 and 5,000 fishermen die in violent storms on the lake, Red Cross figures show.

A study published in 2016 in the scientific journal Nature Communications said climate changes caused by global warming could cause more frequent and dangerous storms on the great lake.

Superstorms that today only occur once every 15 years would likely happen every year if global warming continues apace, it said.

 

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7 comments

  1. Ohhhh to me is very sad news to families who ho lose commenting from Nairobi Kenya south Sudanese by belonging

  2. This is so sad! And it brings me to wonder why it happens that almost every last three months of the year, we lose a lot of people on lake victoria the same way since 2016. I think we should avoid swiming and boat cruising on lake victoria during this time if its not too much necessary, I’ve got to think that the devil is targeting humans during and before festival seasons.

    And the devil’s trap isn’t only on waters of Victoria but on roads too, so fellow Ugandans, take care, drive responsibly, and most importantly, drink responsibly. You’re very much free to drive and drink, but NEVER DRINK AND DRIVE!! Life is so precious and has on substitute or spare parts.

    May they rest in eternal peace those that lost their lives.

  3. Oh my God, this is aerey big shork to many families in this kind of period near festivals if the year,please let’s be careful and put our lives to God.,imagine the incidence on jinja high way ,the rwakayi students all such is so sad….we need God for this case..thank you.

  4. Really this is very bad about the death of all these people but I hope the electric boat tracking will reduce on the accidents

  5. So sad for the lives lost in such a manner,may they soul’s rest in peace.And Bravo the UPF and UPDF marine teams for the work done to save lives of those that you did.

  6. It was godz plan so let protect them

  7. This is so sad we are praying together with those who have lost their loved ones.

    I would suggest we get brand new strong durable boats and just STOP over repairing those with dangerous mechanicall conditions.We repair until we can repair no more this is sad.

    Alternatively we should get more life saving boats with expereinced marine rescuers to patrol around the cruise boat when ever it is out on the water incase anything goes wrong.
    Thanks to the UPDF and Police Marine team.

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