Brother, 12, & sister, six, killed in speedboat crash in Thailand
Feb. 11, 2020
A 12-YEAR-OLD old boy and his six-year-old sister have been killed in a head-on speedboat collision while on holiday in Phuket, Thailand.
Russian siblings Yaroslav and Miroslava Lysy were standing on the bow of the packed vessel when it crashed during a tourist trip yesterday.
Footage showed a large boat - which was reportedly carrying around three dozen people - speeding across a waterway and colliding with another vessel at 8am local time.
Paramedics could then be seen next to a jetty making desperate but unsuccessful attempts to revive the children.
The pair are reported to have been on holiday from Chelyabinsk, Russia with their grandparents, named as Alexander and Tatyana Erkhov, both 52.
The grandparents are thought to have been among 20 people - mostly Russian tourists - who were injured in the accident.
Speaking to Russian newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda, 17-year-old Maria Bolotina, who was also on board the boat, described the moment of impact.
“Two minutes out from the pier, there was a sharp blow,” she said.
“There was nothing to hold in the boat, so everyone flew in different directions.
“Everywhere there was blood, and the screams of [the grandmother of the children].
“We are still in shock."
CAPTAINS TO FACE LEGAL ACTION
The captains of the two boats have been banned from driving for two years and will face legal action for “reckless” handling of the vessels.
Captain Sorn - in charge of the second boat - has reportedly accused the captain of the larger tourist boat of “rushing at him” and not complying with the speed limit.
He said he sounded a warning but that the other captain did not react and “just did not see him”.
The island of Phuket is located off Thailand's western coast and is popular with European and Russian tourists.
Thai authorities have sought to reassure visitors, and have urged foreign tourists to report boats that appear unsafe.
Other boat captains are also being ordered to undergo retraining.
'PHUKET'S PARADISE IMAGE TARNISHED'
The father of the two children, named as Konstantin, 34, said he had heard about the deaths from his son's school, who were informed by a Russian government ombudsman.
“No-one got in touch with us direct, they rang from the school where Yaroslav studied,” he said.
Thai Marine Department Chief Witthaya Yamuang said: “I am very sorry for the two deaths and those injured.
“The boats have been seized as evidence.
“We want every tour and boat operator to pay attention to safety as a priority."
The channel linking two marinas where the accident occurred will also be dredged so boats do not need to cross in such a narrow stretch of sea.
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The Russian Union of Travel Industry warned that, last year, media reported 22 water-related accidents in Thailand that killed 13 Russians and wounded another 14.
The Bangkok Post warned today: "Phuket’s image as a holiday paradise has been tarnished by a string of boat accidents."
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