The Sarawak Fire and Rescue Department said the boat left Sibu at about 8.30am Sunday (June 2) on the way to Kapit with 18 passengers.
"According to information received from the public, after about an hour, the boat reached Kanowit town. As it was about to berth at a pontoon, it rammed into a metal object, resulting in the hole," it said.
As water gushed in, all passengers quickly disembarked with their belongings.
The captain immediately manoeuvred the boat to the opposite bank of the river, which was about 1km away.
The 18 passengers later continued their journey to Kapit in another boat.
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