According the reports, the cargo ship hit from behind the passenger seabus, causing serious damage. DHA photo
A cargo ship collided into a passenger seabus during evening rush-hour traffic in the Bosphorus Feb. 8. Doğan news agency reported that nine people have been injured in the accident, eight of whom were passengers. None of the injured are in serious condition, according to officials.
The Yenikapı-1 seabus was arriving at Kabataş, on the European side of the Bosphorus, from Bostancı on the Marmara coast on the Asian side when it was hit from behind by a cargo ship near Maiden's Tower (Kız Kulesi) at the entry of the Bosphorus around 7:25 p.m. local time. According to reports, passengers traveling on foot and sitting near the door were among the injured. The seabus reached Kabataş port after transmitting a distress call with the help of a towing boat.
The cargo ship, Amur 2521, has been moved to a dock and is being inspected by officials of the Port Directorate of Istanbul. It was carrying dry food, reported private broadcaster NTV.
A catastrophe was avoided as the seabus was not crowded, reports said. Only 33 people were traveling in the boat, which has a capacity of nearly 500 passengers. According to witnesses, passengers did not panic after the collision and remained seated until the boat was docked in the port of Kabataş.
The Bosphorus was not closed to traffic but departures from Kabataş, which is one of the most central and dense transportation stations, located near Dolmabahçe Palace, have been temporarily halted. An investigation has been launched into the cause of the accident.
The chief inspector of the Istanbul Deniz Otobüsleri sea transportation company (IDO), Sercan Karabıyık, told Anatolia news agency that the crash didn't cause the seabus to take on water. "Because the distance between the place where the collision took place and the port was short, it was possible [for the seabus] to approach the shore quickly and evacuate the passengers. There is some damage on the seabus, but there was no question of water entering the boat," he said.
The IDO company had canceled many departures today due to the bad weather.