A huge floating crane, barges and rescue personnel worked early in the morning at Budapest’s Margaret Bridge, where the Hableany (Mermaid) sightseeing boat sank May 29 after colliding with a much larger river cruise ship.
The crane today placed the Hableany, water still streaming out of its hull, onto a barge. Four bodies were recovered from the boat soon after its top reached the surface.
Nineteen South Korean tourists and a Hungarian crewman have previously been confirmed dead, with eight people still missing. Seven people were rescued after the nighttime collision amid heavy rain.
The boat will be handed over to police investigating the collision.
Efforts to search for the missing victims of the accident and to raise the Hableany have been hindered by the Danube’s high springtime water levels — which are expected to fall significantly over the coming days in Budapest — and the river’s fast flow, as well as near-zero visibility under water.
The captain of the other ship in the collision, the Viking Sigyn, has been under arrest since June 1, suspected of endangering water transport leading to a deadly mass accident.
The Viking Sigyn, which left Budapest less than 48 hours after the collision with the Hableany, is back in Hungary on a scheduled trip and docked at the town of Visegrad, north of Budapest.
Police said they carried out another inspection on the ship on Monday.