30 Jul 2010

Fatal capsize in Congo

6:19 pm on 30 July 2010

Up to 140 people are feared dead after a boat carrying passengers and goods capsized on a river in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The incident happened on the Kasai river, a tributary of the Congo River, in the western part of the country.

Information Minister Lambert Mende told the BBC the boat had been overloaded and 80 people had been confirmed dead.

He says the river level was low and the incident occurred when the overcrowded boat hit a mudbank.

Last November at least 73 people died when a boat sank on Lake Mai-Ndombe, also in Bandundu province.

There are few roads or rail links in the Congo and many people travel on vessels that are often overloaded.