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Divers Recover More Bodies From Wreck of Aqua Amazon

By MarEx 2016-07-23 20:38:42

The investigation into the explosion on the cruise ship Aqua Amazon at Enapu, on the Itaya River in the Peruvian Amazon, continued Thursday as divers recovered another body from the ship.

The death toll from the accident is now at seven: Aquiles Ramirez Shuña, Sandino Solsol Fasabi, Miguel Antonio De Vasconcelos Arevalo, Theophilus Yahuarcani Fasabi, Juan Alvaro Palacios, Anthony Alarcon Farro and David Luna Huilca, all either crewmembers or suppliers for the vessel. 

As of Thursday, navy divers had recovered the bodies of Theophilus, who was refueling the vessel at the time of the explosion, plus Arevalo, Solsol, Huilca and Shuña. Families of the deceased have pushed authorities to accelerate the process of recovering the remains. 

13 more were injured, including eight individuals who were hospitalized.

The vessel’s operator, Aqua Expeditions, said that the cause of the explosion was not yet known. "Many of the crew have been with me from 2007 when we started. I considered them dear friends, not just employees," said the firm’s founder and CEO, Francesco Galli Zugaro.

The firm had announced plans for construction of a replacement of the Aqua Amazon on June 30, according to a notice on Newswire. The new vessel is set to begin construction in December; the vessel which exploded and sank was to be renamed Aqualina, and was going to be offered for charter. 

The explosion and sinking also came days after eight armed men boarded and robbed the cruise ship Amazon Discovery near Huaysi, Loreto. Commander Oscar Garrido-Lecca Hoyle of the Iquitos port authority said that the assault was not reported for an hour and a half after it had occurred, and added that operators had been warned a week before of a threat of piracy on the river. He told local media that he had told them to hire armed guards. The robbers took small goods valued at roughly $20,000.