Sunday, September 06, 2009

A Loud Crack

OHRID, Macedonia (Sept. 5) - An overloaded sightseeing boat carrying dozens of Bulgarian tourists sank Saturday in a lake on Macedonia's western border, and 15 people drowned, officials said.

There were 57 passengers on board, Kotevski told The Associated Press. Of those, 15 drowned and 42 were rescued.

Most of the passengers on the 70-year-old boat, which had a 42-person capacity, belonged to a group of tourists from Bulgaria.

"The 23-year-old skipper and his deputy have been questioned about the incident. In their first statements they said that a loud crack was heard (toward the rear) before the boat sunk rapidly," Kotevski said.

If you go on vacation and ride a ferry or boat, be sure to step off and refuse to go, if you feel it is overloaded. Captains and greedy companies don't always follow the rules.

Even here in the Virgin ISlands, on both sides of the dotted line between the two territories, I have seen many ferry boats and sometimes party boats, overloaded. While they shouldn't crack up midways, if you figure 15 extra people at 200 pounds, then you have a TON and a half EXTRA weight. That is a LOT!

Guess that captain couldn't do his math too well. While not everyone will weigh in at 200, some will be more, some less, but many are carrying STUFF and that adds to their overall weight.

The ferries in the islands are required to have a seat for everyone. if they feel the seats with luggage, that counts as people. So if you can't sit down, then get back off and ask for another ferry. They are SUPPOSED to run an extra fery rather than overload (in the islands).

In my younger days I rode an overloaded ferry and many of the standing folks went topside and we rolled mightily, I thought we might just go over completely but we didn't.

Angels were watching.

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