A tourist boat disappeared in Japan with 26 people on board
(CNN) – The Japanese Coast Guard sent patrol boats and planes on Saturday to search for a missing tourist boat with 26 people on board after it sank off the northern island of Hokkaido, the TV channel reported. NHK public television.
NHK said authorities lost contact with the crew of the Kazu 1 after the crew reported that water was flooding the stern of the ship and starting to sink. NHK said the crew also said those on board were wearing life jackets and the ship was pitching at a 30 degree angle.
The radio said there were 24 passengers on board, including two children and two crew members.
No one was immediately available to comment to the JCG outside normal office hours.
NHK said the Coast Guard received a call from the vessel around 1:15 p.m. (12:15 a.m. ET) and dispatched five patrol boats and two aircraft to conduct a search.
No one answered calls from the office of the company that organizes Kazu 1 tours. According to its homepage, the boat has a capacity of 65 people. Tours to the Shiretoko area typically last about three hours, depending on the tour company.
NHK said the vessel left Otoro port around 10 a.m. Saturday and was expected to return to port at 1 p.m. The waves were high and local fishing boats were back in port by mid-morning.
NHK said the tour boat was in the Shiretoko Peninsula area, in the northern part of Japan’s northernmost island, and was believed to be near Kashino Falls.