Seven women drowned after a boat carrying 42 people capsized in a river in the southeastern province of Binh Phuoc Wednesday.
According to the provincial Coast Guard, the accident occurred at 3:50 p.m. when the old wooden vessel, which was carrying farmers returning home across the Mang River in Loc Ninh District, sprung a leak.
The boat was owned by local couple Ho Van Thai, 59, and Nguyen Thi Ne, 56, who regularly transported the farmers across the river and back.
On the fateful day Thai was rowing the overloaded boat when water began to leak into it.
Thai reportedly urged some of the men to jump out to reduce the load.
The passengers got into a panic and rocked the boat violently, causing it to capsize.
Thirty-five people managed to swim to safety. The seven others, who could not swim, drowned in the swift current.
The Coast Guard arrived at the scene after being informed and carried out a search for the victims through Thursday night. By Friday morning they found the bodies of all seven women.
All seven - the youngest being 17 and the oldest 56 - belonged to the S'tieng ethnic group in Loc Hoa Commune, Loc Ninh District.
Thai and Ne have been arrested and the boat has been seized for investigations.