BACHOK, June 30 -- Their excitement over a fishing trip in Bachok waters here ended in tragedy when a boat carrying 20 people including the skipper and several crew capsized after it was caught in a storm about 10 nautical miles from the Kuala Kemasin Base Jetty here last night.
Kelantan Deputy Police Chief SAC Abdullah Mohamad Piah said in the incident at 8 p.m., four of the men were found drowned, four more are still missing while 12 anglers were confirmed safe. All are between the ages of 18 and 60 years.
“The fishing boat they boarded for their trip was reported to have been hit by a storm and strong waves, causing the rope of the anchor to break and the boat to overturn, throwing all into the sea.
“Amidst the chaos, those who were saved were rescued by their friends on other boats, including fishermen, and four bodies were recovered in the vicinity,” he said in a press conference at the Kuala Kemasin Base Jetty here early this morning.
Abdullah said the four bodies and 12 men who were saved were taken to the jetty by a Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) team and other fishermen boats at about 2.15 a.m.
"The bodies and those who were saved were sent to the Raja Perempuan Zainab II Hospital in Kota Bharu for a post-mortem and treatment while the search-and-rescue operations continue, with help from other agencies this morning,” he said.
He said 14 of the anglers were from Kampung Padang Tok La, Pasir Mas, while six others were the skipper and crew who set out on their trip from Kuala Besar, Kota Bharu at 3 p.m. He said several others who have not yet been identified had boarded other boats and started fishing before the storm hit.
Those who died in the incident were Mohd Syahrizan Daud, in his 40s, Muhamad Zaki Muhamad Nordin, 19, Wan Aminudin Wan Hussin, in his 60s , and a Thai national known only as Pokta, in his 50s.
The four missing men are Arman Ismail, 43, Harun Daud, in his 60s, Syafiq Abdul Halim, 30, and Che Wadi Bakar, in his 40s.
Meanwhile, Mohd Rowi Hussin, 50, who is the nephew of victim Harun Daud hopes that his uncle is found soon.
“We accept what Allah decides. I received a call from the police at about 11 p.m. yesterday and rushed here to find out the latest development,” he said.
He added that the anglers had gathered in his house yesterday morning before leaving for Kuala Besar, all excited to go on their trip to catch fish and squid.
He said the last time he saw the group was a video recording of them on the boat sent to him via Whatsapp at about noon yesterday. -- BERNAMA