Banting boat mishap: Bad weather may have caused sinking, say police

Banting boat mishap: Bad weather may have caused sinking, say police

BANTING - Wednesday morning's sinking of a boat off Sungai Air Hitam is believed to have been caused by a storm, said Kuala Langat OCPD Supt Azman Abdul Razak.

He added that the capacity of the boat is believed to be 50 to 60 persons although it is understood that there were an estimated 97 people onboard.

Supt Azman added that while police were still investigating where the boat was headed, it is believed that the boat originated in Pulau Carey and en route to Acheh, Indonesia.

"We cannot speculate but we will continue to search for the passengers. We will investigate the incident thoroughly," he told a press conference at the Kampung Kelanang jetty here.

He added that 31 survivors were found Wednesday morning by the Customs Department while the rest of the survivors had been brought to the Kuala Langat district police headquarters for investigations.

Supt Azman said police were investigating the passengers under the Anti-Trafficking in Persons (ATIP) Act 2003 while trying to ascertain their identities.

Initial reports said the 97 people were onboard the boat that sunk two nautical miles off Sungai Air Hitam at around midnight on Wednesday.

A distress call was received by the Banting Fire and Rescue department at about 12.24am Wednesday and a search and rescue team (SAR) was dispatched to the scene 30 minutes later.

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