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Woman drowns after boat sinks in Kampong Speu

A WOMAN died after a boat capsized Monday in Por Meas village, in Kampong Speu province’s Oral district, while she was crossing a small river to her farm, bringing to 27 the number of people killed in boating accidents since October.

Muong Khy, deputy governor of Oral district, said Monday two women and a man from Phnom Penh hired two boats from villagers in Trapaing Chor commune to cross a 20-metre wide river at Peam Lvea dam. While they were crossing, one of the boats sank, he said, and Khov Hunseang, a 50-year-old resident of Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh district, drowned.

“The sunken boat was loaded with three people, with two of them being from Phnom Penh and the other one being the boat rower and owner,” he said. He added that the boat owner and one of the women managed to swim to safety, but that the dead woman suffered from arthritis and could not make it to land, despite the attempts of villagers and bystanders to save her.

Muong Khy said the boat sank when the women panicked as a leech crawled onto the vessel, causing it to capsize.

“It was a small boat made from a tree trunk, which can turn over very easily,” he added.

Dos Sim, the police chief of Oral district, said that Monday’s incident was the first drowning to happen there this year, putting it down to the carelessness of those travelling in the boat.

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