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Disaster at sea: more than a century of deadly shipwrecks


02:13 PM September 27th, 2012

September 27th, 2012 02:13 PM

In this April 10, 1912 file photo, the Luxury liner Titanic departs Southampton, England, for her maiden Atlantic Ocean voyage to New York. An expedition team using sonar imaging and robots has created what is believed to be the first comprehensive map of the entire Titanic wreck site on the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean. The luxury passenger liner sank about 375 miles south of Newfoundland, Canada, after striking an iceberg on its maiden voyage from England to New York on April 15, 1912, killing more than 1,500 people. (AP Photo, File)

PARIS—As Senegal marks the 10th anniversary of the sinking of the Joola passenger ferry, one of the world’s worst maritime tragedies, below are the deadliest peacetime shipping disasters since the beginning of the 20th century:

  • June 15, 1904: The American steamer General Slocum catches fire and sinks in New York’s East River, killing 1,020.
  • April 15, 1912: The Titanic, the biggest, most ambitious ship of its age, hits an iceberg in the North Atlantic and sinks on its maiden voyage, with the death of 1,513 passengers and crew. A total of 711 are rescued.
  • September 22, 1912: A Japanese steamship, the Kiche Maru, sinks off the eastern Japanese island of Honshu during a typhoon: more than 1,000 die.
  • May 29, 1914: The Empress of Ireland, a Canadian passenger liner sailing between Canada and Britain, sinks after colliding with the Norwegian cargo ship Storstad on the Saint-Laurent River: 1,012 die.
  • March 3, 1921: Around 1,000 are killed when the Singapore ocean liner Hong Moh is wrecked on Lamock island in the South China Sea.
  • September 26, 1954: The Japanese ferry Toya Maru sinks in the Sea of Japan between the northern islands of Hokkaido and Honshu when caught in a major typhoon: at least 1,150 die.
  • December 20, 1987: The Philippines ferry Dona Paz sinks after colliding with the oil tanker Vector: 4,386 die in what is the world’s worst maritime disaster outside of wartime.
  • September 26, 2002: An overcrowded Senegalese passenger ferry, the Joola, capsizes in stormy seas off the coast of Gambia while en route from Casamance in southern Senegal to Dakar: at least 1,860 die.

February 3, 2006: The Egyptian ferry Al-Salam Boccaccio 98, linking the Saudi port of Duba and the Egyptian port of Safaga, sinks in the Red Sea following a fire: 1,028 people die.

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