At least 9 bodies have been found after a passenger ferry sank off Pulau Ternate Island (Maluku Indonesia) due to bad weather, a search and rescue official revealed on Thursday, July 20.
The KM Cahaya Arafah ferry capsized in waters off Ternate island on Monday evening, July 18, prompting a search & rescue operation for 13 missing people.
Rescuers found 4 bodies on Wednesday evening, July 20, and 5 bodies on the search's 4th day.
4 people remain missing.
The ferryboat was carrying 77 passengers and crew onboard as it sailed to the nearby island of Halmahera.
64 people were evacuated to the nearby village after the sinking.
Local villagers sailed out in their longboats in order to help authorities in a ship with the search operation.
Marine accidents are quite common in Indonesia, a Southeast Asian archipelago of ~17,000 islands, where people rely on small boats and ferries to travel around despite poor safety standards.
In May 2022, a ferry with 800+ ran aground off East Nusa Tenggara and remained stuck for 2 days before being dislodged. In 2018, 150+ people drowned after a ferry sank in Toba Lake, one of the deepest lakes in North Sumatra.