Grief over ferry tragedy unites Hongkongers online

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2012, 9:55am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2012, 5:30pm

Tributes and eye-witness accounts of the Lamma Island ferry disaster are pouring in from Hongkongers via Twitter and other social media as they come to terms with the tragedy that has left at least 37 people dead.

At the forum for residents of Lamma island, one user shares what looks to be an eyewitness account of the crash, with harsh words for the crew of the ferry that rammed the party boat:

I was on the Lamma ferry that departed Central at 8 pm. The ferry crashed shortly before arriving at Lamma pier. Strangely, none of the news reports I've seen so far (as of 10:51 pm), whether in Chinese or English, mentioned that the Lamma ferry crashed. The ferry crashed directly into something (apparently the gai do) and threw people forward in the cabin. About five minutes after the crash, the ferry began to take on water near the front of the cabin on the first floor. People began to be very frightened at that point.

We put on life vests and went toward the back of the ferry. During this whole time, we received no information or instructions from any of the HKKF crew. I think this probably made people even more frightened. Luckily for us on the ferry, the crash seemed to have occurred close to the pier, and the ferry made it to the pier, where all of the passengers disembarked, apparently with only minor injuries. When we got off, there was no rescue personnel waiting, even though at this point, it had been about fifteen minutes since the crash, and the HKKF crew seemed to be more worried about people walking off with life vests than whether or not the passengers were o.k. My wife tried to speak with the police, who eventually showed up, but they seemed equally uninterested in what had happened on the ferry.

Read more, including a later update from the same user, here.

From YouTube user DynamoMor is this cellphone video footage taken last night of the Hong Kong Electric ferry as it sank:


Katie Kearns ‏@kaTEAnd_Sugaa: RIP to all the people who died in the hong kong latern festival ferry collision #staystrong 

Steve Dunthorne ‏@Steve_Dunthorne: suspect it's going to emerge that many of those who died were children, certainly seems there were many children on the boat #Lamma 

Virginia Spielmann ‏@spielwomann: Shocked & saddened by Lamma ferry disaster. Sounds like poorly managed carnage. #RIP 

Trey Menefee ‏@SlackerScholar: yeah, so 25 dead off Lamma. No one we know. We were watching the rescue from a rooftop party... 

Sanday KC ‏@sandaykc: #HK: 25 dead after an evening cruise to watch the National Day fireworks celebration ends in tragedy 

Zeb Eckert ‏@ZebEckert: Thinking of all those impacted by terrible ferry/party boat collision last night in Hong Kong. At least 25 ppl feared dead this morning. 

Didi French ‏@DidiFrench: OMG, how heartbreaking, shocking story.:(( #HongKong ferry hits party boat, 25 confirmed dead...RIP 

Chrissy Baby ‏@ChrissyBabyHK: OMG. 25 confirmed dead from the ferry accident in HK. Very very sad. 

Kaufman Ng ‏@kaufmanng: so sad to hear 25 people died in HK ferry accident 

Enfys Jenkins ‏@enfys852: Learning my sister was on the ferry half an hour before the one that sank in HK gives me chills. Just shows we take everything for granted. 

Sassy Mama ‏@SassyMamaHK: We're thinking of all those affected by last night's Lamma Ferry disaster. What a terrible end to the holiday... 

Jonathan Stubbs ‏@jonathanstubbs: Sad to hear of the ferry accident off Lamma Island last night with 20+ dead. 

David Maurice ‏@DCM123: Shocked to hear what has happened of Lamma Island. Thoughts go out to all affected. 

Toby ‏@brunswickvegan: Horrible accident in HK last night. Very sad. 25 people died. Fireworks/celebration still go ahead. 

Nic Tinworth ‏@nictinworth: Sad to wake up to the news of more confirmed deaths in the #Lamma ferry accident. 

Kim Yang ‏@Kim_Yang_Lim: Very very sad to read this. Used to live on Lamma.