As per the sources, till now, ten bodies of the individuals traveling on the tourist boat have been discovered and have been declared dead. There were a total of 26 passengers, including two children touring on northern waters from Hokkaido.
The Japan Coast Guard and Self-Defense Forces sent vessels and aircraft to aid in rescue efforts after the 19 ton Kazu I lost communication. It reported that it was taking on water at 1:15 pm on Saturday. There were 2 children among the 26 passengers.
Nine of the ten discovered passengers were found dead around rocks nearby. This was around 10 kilometers from the first rescue call. Authorities are still searching for 16 others and the boat.
It was revealed that a 54-year-old captained the tourist boat, and he was assisted by a 27-year-old on the ship.
On Sunday, relatives and friends of the passengers went along with other people to a local town hall, where an emergency center was established.
The search was joined by fishing boats and tourist vessels from the region. However, some returned to port after a few hours due to strong winds.
The incident occurred right in the famous scenic tourist destination just 27km away from the port, also known as Kashuni falls.
According to the local fisheries cooperative, water temperatures have been between 2 C and 4 C in recent days. Strong winds and high waves were also observed Saturday around noon. The bad weather caused the fishing boats to return to port before noon.
The Kazu I was this year’s first tourist boat to be operating in the area. A captain from another operator of tourist boats advised the Kazu I crew to stay at port, given the area’s wind and high surf warnings.
All three types of self-defense forces, Air, Maritime, and Ground, have sent aircraft to assist in searching for passengers and crew. The MSDF has also sent a destroyer.
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism reports that the Kazu I was in collision with a floating object in May 2013. Three passengers were injured. The boat ran aground in shallow water just after leaving port in June.
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