Two detained over deadly tourist boat capsizing

Two people have been detained following the capsizing of a tourist boat on a river in northeastern China that led to the drowning deaths of 12 visitors, state media reported.

The accident occurred Saturday afternoon outside the city of Qinhuangdao near the coast of Hebei province.

A total of 31 people were thrown into the water. The boat was made by local villagers and was not equipped with life jackets or other safety equipment, according to a report by Xinhua yesterday.

The boat’s owner and operator were held while an investigation into the accident was underway.

China is a nation of powerful rivers and such deadly accidents used to be common before major safety improvements in recent years.

China’s tourist industry has been slow to recover following the partial lifting of restrictions in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Rural communities have long struggled to generate jobs, spurring the working age population to migrate to cities. — AP

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