Rescuers saved more than 240 people aboard a crowded Indonesian passenger ferry that sank in rough waters off Sumatra island, but 29 people died and at least 17 others were missing, officials said.
The Dumai Express 10 sank Sunday in stormy weather about 90 minutes into an inter-island trip from Batam to Dumai in Riau, a province off Sumatra island in western Indonesia. A second ferry ran aground nearby, but all its passengers were said to be safe.
Indonesian ferry accidents have killed hundreds of people in recent years. Boats are often overcrowded, and safety regulations are poorly enforced. The vast country spans more than 17,000 islands, and boats are a popular and relatively cheap form of transportation.
The stricken ferry went down about 30 minutes after huge waves damaged its bow and water started seeping in, according to a report from the ship's captain, said Lt. Col. Edwin, the local navy chief.