Boat accident victims' families receive $290,000-plus in compensation

TN News

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Families of the 16 people killed in a boat accident in the southern province of Binh Duong in May have received a total of VND6 billion (US$291,828) in compensation from the boat owner, VnExpress reported Friday.

The families of four Chinese victims received $12,000 each, including funeral and  transportation fees, from the Din Ky Company, the newswire quoted the authorities of Thuan An Town as saying.

Vietnamese victims' families were paid between $6,500-10,000 each, it said. The report carried no further details of the compensation and other expenses.

On May 20, 28 people, including seven crew members, were on a floating restaurant when it overturned and sank in the Saigon River during heavy rain and strong winds.

Five passengers and the crew swam to safety. Others, including nine members of a family who were celebrating the birthday of a three-year-old boy, drowned. All the bodies were recovered later.

After the incident, police arrested Le Van Duc, the floating restaurant's captain, and Le Van Quang, its manager, for investigations.

Duc was found to lack needed qualifications to pilot the boat whose registration certificate had expired in February. The port, which has been operated by Din Ky for many years, had never been licensed because it was located in a dangerous site with a whirlpool nearby.

So far, official conclusions about the tragic accident have not announced, according to VnExpress.

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The accident sparked safety concerns among waterway agencies in HCMC and Binh Duong, prompting checks on local boats' safety.

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism instructed its provincial branches to coordinate with other agencies to better monitor waterway tourism and ensure safety.

Provinces nationwide were told to survey tourism boats and propose measures to improve the service.

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