A country boat carrying over 40 people, mostly school and college students returning home, capsized in the Godavari at Pasuvullanka near I. Polavaram in East Godavari district at about 5 p.m.
According to sources, the boat reportedly hit a pillar of an under-construction bridge and toppled. As many as 10 people were rescued by residents in the area and search is on for the rest. The rescue operation is expected to be a challenge as the river is in spate and light is going to fail soon.
Meanwhile, the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams have been pressed into service to take up the rescue operation. Two teams, of 35 members each, from Rajamahendravaram and Visakhapatnam are likely to reach the accident spot in about an hour according to sources. The relevant government departments have been alerted for rescue according to a message from the Chief Minister’s office.
In May 2017, 20 people died when a boat carrying 40 people capsized near Polavaram village.