Boat collision on Russia′s Volga River kills 11 | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 12.06.2018
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Boat collision on Russia's Volga River kills 11

At least 16 people were on the catamaran when it collided with another boat 250 meters from the riverbank in Volgograd. Russia's Investigative Committee has opened an investigation into the cause of the crash.

At least 11 people on a river cruise died after their boat crashed into a barge on the Volga River in the Russian city of Volgograd on Monday.

At least 16 Russians were on the vessel, according to Russia's Investigative Committee, which has opened an investigation into possible breaches of safety regulations.

Emergency services were made aware that the vessels had collided on the Volga River, about 250 meters from the riverbank at around 10 p.m. (1900 GMT).

Five people were rescued and three survivors were in hospital, according to the website of regional governor Andrei Bocharov.

"The rescue operations have just finished. The last body has been recovered and the number of dead is 11," the local emergencies ministry said in a statement quoted by the Ria Novosti news agency.

The site of a boat collission on the Volga River in Volgagrad, Russia (picture-alliance/dpa/GU of the Ministry of Emergency Measures of Russia)

Russia's Investigative Committee has opened an investigation into the cause of the crash

Potential safety regulation breaches

An unnamed source from the Russian Federal Agency for Maritime and River Transport told Russian news agency TASS that the catamaran was only built to carry 12 people and was unlicensed.

"The catamaran is without documents and without identification lights," the source said.

Another unnamed source from emergency services told TASS that a violation of catamaran manoeuvring rules was being explored as one of main potential causes of the incident.

"According to one of the versions, the master [of the twin-hull ship] could breach maneuvering rules, failed to notice the barge and did not make an attempt to avoid the collision," the source said. He added that other possible causes would be investigated.

Volgograd, known as Stalingrad from 1925-1961, will host World Cup opening round matches including games with England, Tunisia, Nigeria, Iceland, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Japan and Poland.

law/rc (AFP, Reuters)

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