News / Asia

    South Korea Ferry Death Toll Passes 100

    Death Toll Passes 100 as Divers Search South Korea Ferryi
    X
    April 22, 2014 7:20 PM
    The death toll from the sinking of a South Korean ferry has risen to 117 as divers continue the search for 185 passengers still missing and presumed dead. Only 174 were rescued when the ship went down almost a week ago, filled mostly with high schools students on their way to the resort island of Jeju. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Jindo, South Korea.
    Related report by Daniel Schearf
    VOA News
    The death toll from last week's South Korea ferry accident exceeded 100 on Tuesday, as divers continue pulling bodies from the sunken vessel.

    More than 200 people remain missing and are presumed dead after becoming trapped on the five-story passenger ship, which capsized last Wednesday.

    Divers retrieved 17 bodies from the 6,800-ton Sewol ferry early Tuesday. The pace of the recovery effort is expected to speed up as conditions improve.

    Coast Guard official Ko Myung-suk said the strong ocean current, which has hampered the effort, is expected to be calmer on Tuesday.

    "The wave height of the search operation site is around .5 meters for today. The flow speed is slow so it would be fine to search," said Ko.

    With an expected final death toll of around 300, the accident is set to become South Korea's worst ferry disaster in more than two decades.

    The ship's captain, third mate, and one other crew member were arrested Saturday on charges of deserting their passengers as the ferry was sinking.

    The captain, who was one of the first to leave the ship, said he did not order an immediate evacuation because of the ocean's strong currents and cold water.

    South Korean President Park Geun-hye said the actions of the crew were "incomprehensible and unacceptable" and "like murder."

    South Korean prosecutors say the ferry was being steered by a 26-year-old third mate who was navigating the area for the first time.

    Tracking data shows the ship took a sharp turn while navigating a group of small islands off South Korea's southwestern coast.
     
    • Family members of a missing passenger from the capsized passenger ferry, Sewol, wait for news of the rescue operation at a makeshift accommodation, in the port city of Jindo, April 23, 2014.
    • Women wearing protective suits spray antiseptic solution around the tents of volunteers who distribute food and necessities for relatives of missing passengers of Sewol, in Jindo, April 23, 2014.
    • People pray during a candlelight vigil to commemorate the victims of capsized passenger ferry Sewol and to wish for the safe return of missing passengers, in Ansan, Korea, April 23, 2014.
    • Satellite trucks for members of the press reporting on the sunken ferry, Sewol, in Jindo, April 18, 2014. (Sungmin Do/VOA)
    • A Buddhist monk prays for the missing passengers who were on the South Korean ferry, Sewol. Family members, rescue staff and members of the press gather at the port, Jindo, April 18, 2014. (Sungmin Do/VOA)
    • A rescue diver jumps in near the buoys installed to mark the location of the sunken ferry Sewol off the southern coast, near Jindo, April 18, 2014. 
    • This giant offshore crane will be used in the rescue operation of the capsized passenger ferry Sewol. Seen here, it is moving into position as members of the South Korean Navy's SSU (Ship Salvage Unit) take part in the rescue operation, Jindo, April 18, 2014.
    • A family member of a missing passenger on South Korean ferry Sewol cries as she waits for news from a rescue team, Jindo, April 18, 2014.
    • A family member of missing passengers who were on the Sewol ferry looks toward the site of the incident, Jindo, April 18, 2014.

    Authorities have not established the cause of the disaster, but some survivors report hearing a loud impact noise before the vessel tilted and began sinking.

    A memorial service for many of the victims is planned Wednesday in Ansan, South Korea, home to many of the high school students on the ship.

    Most of the victims were high schools students on their way to a school outing on the resort island of Jeju.
     
    Error rendering storify.

    You May Like

    Video Rubio Looks to Surge in New Hampshire

    Republican presidential candidate has moved into second place in several recent surveys and appears to be gaining ground on longtime frontrunner Donald Trump

    UN Calls for Global Ban on Female Genital Mutilation

    Recent UNICEF report finds at least 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone female genital mutilation in 30 countries

    UN Pilots New Peace Approach in CAR

    Approach launched in northern town of Kaga Bandoro, where former combatants of mainly Muslim Seleka armed group and Christian and animist anti-Balaka movement are being paid to do community work

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.