If you’re quite the follower of international news updates then you must have seen news about the Sewol Ferry that capsized and sunk nearly three years back with over 304 people onboard was hauled back to the surface on the 24th of March, 2017.
For those of you who aren’t aware of what actually happened I’ll break it down for you.
- MV Sewol Ferry set sail on 15th April 2014 from the Incheon port to Jeju Island, a famous resort island with 467assengers onboard, of whom 325 were high school students from the Danwon High School in the southern city of Ansan who were on their way to a field trip to the resort island on the 6,825 tonne ferry.
- On 16th April 2014, the ferry started listing off towards one side near the coast of Jindo southwest and sunk after two hours with more than 304 passengers trapped inside the ferry, most of whom were school students.
- Upon investigations it was speculated that the listing of the ferry was due to multiple turns to the right side which rapidly caused the head of the ship towards the right.
- The tilt caused the cargo from the overloaded bay to fall to one side which made the ferry lose its restoring force.
- On 16th April, third mate Park Han-kyul and helmsman Cho Joon-ki took over the watch from the previous team around 7:30 A.M. and the inclination, its effect were felt around 8:50 A.M.
- The water started entering through the cargo bay and soon started flooding the passenger compartments, announcements were around 8:52 A.M. asking the passengers to stay put and not to move about.
- Captain Lee substantiated the order asking the passengers to stay put while he along with crew members abandoned the ship.
- The capsizing and the sinking of the ferry took nearly about two and half hours.
- 172 were rescued with nearly 295 people who drowned with the sinking of the ferry, nine missing bodies are still to be recovered.
- The Vice Principal of Danwon High School, Kang Min-kyu who had been rescued from the commited suicide a few days later after the incident.
- The negligence of the captain and crew members have out them behind the bars with the captain serving lifetime imprisonment on charges of murder through willful negligience.
- This incident in particular was a beginning to the end of the ousting of the South Korean President, Park Geun-hye.
- The government was criticized for its lack of response o disaster and the ineffectual regulation protocols.
- Jung Hong-won, the Prime Minister resigned the office after a week or so accepting responsibility for the lack of diaster response from the government.
Salvage operation to bring the ferry onto the surface began on March 22, 2017 and just last week the sunken wreckage of the Sewol Ferry was brought back up to the surface in hopes of finding the missing bodies of the remaining victims and investigate to find out a more accurate cause which resulted in the diastrous sinking claiming precious lives.
Let us hope and pray that the remains of all the missing nine victims are found so that they can finally rest in peace; let the families who wait in anguished, bereaved state find solace at last.