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8 Taiwanese die in SE Asia boat tragedies

At least eight Taiwanese tourists were killed in two boat accidents in Vietnam and the Philippines, yesterday.

Five Taiwanese tourists died in a trip-turned-tragedy boat accident in Ha Long Bay, Vietnam. Thirty-six people were onboard when the boat capsized after colliding with a larger vessel around 4 p.m., according to the Tourism Bureau.

The passengers onboard were employees of Kaohsiung-based company Wang Li Xing (旺利興) and their family members.

The identified victims of the accident are as follows: Chen Yi-chiu (陳義久), aged 69, male; Lee Hui-chen (李蕙真), 36, female; Huang Feng-chin (黃鳳琴), 58, female; Huang Hsuan-chi (黃宣綺), 9, female; and Kung Fang-ju (龔芳如), 34, female. The tourists were led by tour guide Chiu Si-zong (邱思宗) from the Life Tour tourism agency (五福旅行社).

General Manager of the Life Tour tourism agency Chen Tian-cai (陳天財) said that the passengers were moving from a larger vessel to a small-sized boat when a cruise ship ran into them.

“We are actively dealing with the situation now. The surviving tourists have been taken into care and are safe now,” said Chen.

The group was scheduled to return to Taiwan on Oct. 5. Members of the group were insured by FuBon (富邦) Travel Insurance. Accidents and deaths can be insured against for up to NT$2 million, according to the Tourism Bureau.

Capsized Boat Kills 3 in Philippines

In a separate incident, three Taiwanese tourists drowned in waters off Boracay, the Philipines, as a bangka, a traditional Philippine boat, capsized due to strong winds and waves, yesterday afternoon.

The bangka, the major mode of transportation in waters off Boracay, was reportedly carrying around 30 Taiwanese tourists and six Filipino crew members. Taiwanese representative to the Philippines Raymond Wang (王樂生) said that the boat capsized due to strong winds and waves. The identified victims are Lai Yu-mei (賴玉妹), aged 69, and Zhang Ai-ling (張愛玲), 48, mother and daughter respectively, as well as 2-year-old infant Chen Si-qing (陳思晴).

Beaufort Tourist Agency (百福旅遊) Vice General Manager Jin Gong-quan (金拱泉) said that the incident had occurred when the tourists were being shuttled back to their hotels right after lunch. The boat was already very close to port when a sudden downpour of rain drenched one side of the vessel, causing the passengers to gather on the other side, thereby tilting the boat, which, compounded by strong waves and winds, eventually capsized.

The accident occurred around 2 p.m. in the vicinity of Crocodile Island in Barangay Tambisaan, Malay municipality, Aklan province. The Taiwanese tourists had purchased a travel package, including tickets and accommodation, through the Taiwan-based travel agency; the package did not provide a tour guide.

The Beaufort Tourist Agency will lend its assistance to the families of the victims, according to the Tourism Bureau.

October 4, 2012    abcdog@
Common sense should be a subject in Taiwan. When you all move to one side of a boat it might turn over. When schools pay peanuts, you get a monkey in front of your class. Finally, if you have a Master slave workplace, 99% will be unhappy slaves. When are you going to get the message? I have been on these boats myself and I could see the danger, but I am not Chinese.
October 4, 2012    Mordrake@
Strangers to Taiwan, please note; in all reports of drowning incidents, one critical piece of information will ALWAYS be omitted - namely "they could not swim".
October 4, 2012    milkalex@
"a sudden downpour of rain drenched one side of the vessel, causing the passengers to gather on the other side, thereby tilting the boat"

Sorry but that is typical Taiwanese behaviour. If they wouldn't be so bloody scared of rain, they would be still alive. Just because it’s raining, they have to move all at the same time on one side of the boat?
October 7, 2012    blairjames@
I agree with Mordrake. Further, swimming lessons should be a mandatory part of the educational system. Besides, it's excellent exercise!
October 13, 2012    hetoon@
milkalex@ wrote:
"a sudden downpour of rain drenched one side of the vessel, causing the passengers to gather on the other side, thereby tilting the boat"

Sorry but that is typical Taiwanese behaviour. If they wouldn't be so bloody scared of rain, they would be still alive. Just because it’s raining, they have to move all at the same time on one side of the boat?
What planet are you from? We are all human beings here!
A dose of sympathy at times like this, however, small, is not too much to ask, is it?
October 24, 2012    comments@
I agree with Mordrake and Milkalex.
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General Manager of Life Tour tourism agency (五福旅行社) Chen Tian-cai (陳天財) comments in Taipei yesterday evening on the Vietnam Ha Long Bay boat collision accident, which resulted in ...

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