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Sand dredger damages boat

ferry submerged
The Kanika Floating Bar-Restaurant lies partially submerged at a dock behind the Himawari Hotel in Phnom Penh yesterday. Photograph: Pha Lina/Phnom Penh Post

The Kanika Floating Bar-Restaurant, which docks behind Phnom Penh’s Himawari Hotel, partially sank yesterday after being clipped while moored early in the morning by what one person involved described as a “small sand dredger”.

Yesterday afternoon, the boat could be seen listing to one side behind the Himawari as workers, some with air hoses, dived around the hull, seemingly performing repairs.

A man named Simon, who identified himself as a principal in the restaurant but declined to give his full name, said the damage would be repaired within a couple of days, adding it was a “basic fix” to one of the hulls of the wooden catamaran but they chose to “err on the side of safety”.

“They just glanced us. Because we were docked, a small hole appeared,” he said. “There’s no real harm done.”

“It’s happened before,” he said, noting that year ago a sand-dredging boat that belonged to a different owner had hit the Kanika’s mooring.

Of the owner of yesterday’s allegedly offending sand-dredger, he said: “We think we know who he is.”

The Kanika’s management would talk to the dredger’s owner, he said, adding that he expected the owner would agree to pay compensation, allowing both parties to avoid an “insurance nightmare”.

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