Three people died, with eight still missing, when an overcrowded boat carrying Indonesian migrant workers heading home for the coming Eid-ul Fitr, sank in the Malacca Strait off southern Malaysia, the Malaysian Insider reports.
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency managed to save ten passengers from the capsized boat off Johor, Malaysia.
“An intense sea and air search and rescue operation is underway in the Malacca Straits with sea conditions being slightly choppy,” said Iskandar Ishak, local Head of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
The sunken boat reportedly had the capacity of only eight passengers.
The boat was en route to Riau, Sumatra, when it got caught up in strong winds while passing the Malacca Strait.
This is the fourth reported accident involving Indonesian migrant workers heading home for the upcoming Muslim holiday, with the previous three incidents claiming more than a dozen lives, with much more still missing.
Boat accidents such as these are becoming a common occurrence, with an estimated number of around two million illegal workers coming from the less affluent countries, drawn by the Malaysian comparatively healthy economy.
World Maritime News Staff, July 25, 2014