Today in History: Ferry Sinks Off Gambian Coast

A ferry from Senegal capsizes off the coast of Gambia on this day in 2002.

Only 64 out of more than 1,000 passengers were rescued, making it one of the worst maritime disasters in history.

The Joola, as it was called,  was traveling from Ziguinchor, in the province of Casamance on the southern coast of Senegal, to Senegal’s capital city, Dakar.

It was a German-built ferry that had begun service 12 years before in 1990.

Apparently, many people had been allowed to board even though they did not have tickets for the trip.

The Joola had experienced problems with its engine during a previous trip from Ziguinchor and had been taken out of service for nearly a year.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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