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7 dead, 3 missing as boat sinks off Romblon

Seven people died while three others are still missing after a motorbanca capsized off the waters of Barangay Agbudia, Romblon, Romblon Friday, the Philippine Coast Guard said yesterday.

PCG officials said 45 passengers and crew of motorbanca Alad Express 2 were rescued since Friday morning.

The motorbanca reportedly carrying 50 passengers and crew was on its way to the Port of Romblon from Sibuyan Island at 9:40 a.m. when it encountered big waves and strong winds, causing it to capsize and crash into rocks.

The motorbanca was reportedly torn when it crashed into the rocks.

Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor, director of the Region 4-B or MIMAROPA (Mindoro Oriental and Occidental, Marinduque, Romblon, and Palawan) police, said the motorbanca sank near the Rowena Beach Resort in Barangay Agbudia.

“The boat sank due to strong waves and tornadoes,” said Mayor.

Joint search and rescue operations by the Coast Guard Sub Station Romblon, Coast Guard Sub-Station Bagacay, and CG K-9 Unit Romblon continue.

Philippine Red Cross Chairman Sen. Richard J. Gordon said a team from the PRC has been deployed to look into the condition of the survivors. Most of the rescued passengers were brought to the Romblon District Hospital.
(Aaron B. Recuenco and Betheena Kae Unite)