Bangkok, Dec 26 (EFE).- The Thai Navy confirmed Monday the death of 18 people as a result of the sinking of a warship a week ago, while search and rescue teams entered their eighth day of work to locate 11 crew members who remain missing.
The navy reported through its social media that, of the 18 fatalities left behind by the sinking of the military ship HTMS Sukhothai, 10 have been identified, while eight bodies have undergone forensic tests to confirm their identities.
The HTMS Sukhothai, a corvette ship, sank on the night of Dec. 18 about 37 kilometers off the coast of the Thai province of Prachuap Khiri Khan, southwest of Bangkok, with 105 crew members on board and after being hit by a strong temporary, which caused water to enter the engine room and power outages.
Eleven sailors remain missing, so relief groups continue their search with a team that includes specialized agents, divers, sniffer dogs, volunteers and vehicles such as boats, drones and helicopters.
Of the 105 crew members who were on board the ship at the time of the incident – whose causes are being investigated – 58 have been rescued without major injuries and 18 had to be admitted to hospital.
Preliminary investigations indicate the ship did not have enough life jackets for all passengers, while doubts have arisen about the ship’s seaworthiness conditions, which supposedly had a hull maintenance review pending.
These factors led the opposition to announce it would submit an urgent motion for a debate on the incident in Parliament and call for the resignation of Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha as Defense Minister, a position he holds simultaneously, to “demonstrate his responsibility.” EFE