South Korea’s coast guard said Tuesday that it has rescued all passengers and crew members from a cruise ship that ran aground near a rocky island off the country’s southwestern coast earlier in the day.
According to authorities, the 171-ton “Vacance” sightseeing vessel was stranded off the island of Hongdo, about 210 miles southwest of Seoul, at 9:10 a.m. local time, or 8:10 p.m. EDT. All 105 passengers and five crew members were rescued by about 9:30 a.m. local time, Bloomberg reported, adding that two people suffered minor injuries.
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The 355-passenger ship, which was built in Japan in 1987, was operated by Hongdo Cruise Co-operative, a joint venture between the island’s residents and outside entities, the Bloomberg report said, citing Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper and Yonhap News.
Tuesday’s incident revived memories of a ferry disaster earlier this year when the Sewol ferry sank on April 16, killing more than 300 people, mostly school children, in the country’s worst maritime disaster in decades.
President Park Geun-hye's government was criticized heavily for the handling of the disaster and her government later vowed an overhaul of the country’s shipping industry to improve safety standards.