Yeji boat disaster death toll hits 13

Yeji boat disaster death toll hits 13

The death toll in the Yeji boat disaster has hit 13, with the search team giving up any hope of finding any more bodies two days after the accident on the Volta River on Sunday.

Five more bodies, including that of a pregnant woman, were retrieved from the lake on Monday, according to a report by myjoyonline.com.

Six children - all under three years  - were first pulled out of the river during a late afternoon search by the Ghana Navy on Sunday while two more were found on Monday morning.

The police have confirmed that the disaster was caused by overloading. According to them, the boat was supposed to have carried no more than 57 passengers, but it ended up loading 70 passengers and other goods, including tubers of yam and bags of kokonte. Once source also claimed that cows were on board the boat.

Eyewitnesses said the boat which was carrying passengers from Nantwekope to Yeji hit a tree stump in the middle of the journey and capsized.

According to them, passengers who could swim helped other passengers to stay afloat after the accident but they got tired after holding on for some time.

DSP Abraham Bansah, the Yeji District police commander, has proposed that to prevent a similar tragedy, there is the need for naval officers to be positioned to patrol both ends of the Volta River to ensure that vessel owners do not overload their boats with passengers and load.

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The Yeji boat disaster is not the only accident to have occurred on the Volta River this year. Four people died about a week ago in a similar accident. According to NADMO, the deceased people included a  three-year-old child, a man and two women.

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