TOFINO, British Columbia (Reuters) – A Canadian whale-watching tour boat with 27 passengers on board sank off the coast of British Columbia on Sunday, killing five people with one missing, rescue officials said. Twenty-one people had been rescued when the search was called off late at night, Melissa Kai, a spokeswoman for the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC), said.
According to the JRCC a distress call was received at around 5pm on Sunday prompting an urgent response to the Whale watching vessel of the coast of British Columbia. Also in response to the distress call, approximately 15-20 fishing vessels responded.
According to John Forde who works in the industry, the vessel which is a 65 foot, three deck boat would have been carrying life jackets but owing to it’s size it wouldn’t have been mandatory for those on board to wear them. He continued to share in his interview that the sea at the time was approximately three to four meters which is ‘fairly big’.
It is believed that 18 people that have been rescued from the sinking vessel situated in the freezing waters, they have now been taken to safety and have now admitted to Tofino General Hospital. According to BBC News however the Foreign Office is now making urgent enquiries to establish whether or not any Brits have been injured in the tragic accident where 4 bodies have already been recovered.