DENPASAR, Indonesia: A elderly Japanese tourist and two Indonesians drowned Monday after being thrown off a glass-bottomed boat battered by big waves near Bali, police said, the latest maritime accident on the island.
The 71-year-old Japanese man and three other foreign tourists were taking part in the trip southwest of Bali on the boat, a popular choice for visitors trying to glimpse Indonesia’s exotic marine life.
But the boat tipped over as it was hit by a wave, sending the tourist—whom police identified only as Nakazawa—and the Indonesian boat captain and his wife flying into the water, said local police chief Hadi Purnomo.
Initial efforts to reach the victims were hampered by large waves, although rescuers later managed to retrieve the bodies, he said.
The Indonesian archipelago consists of more than 17,000 islands and is heavily dependent on boat transport, but the industry has a poor safety record and fatal accidents are common.
In September an explosion on a speedboat in Bali killed an Austrian woman and a Spanish woman and injured 20 other foreign tourists. The blast was believed to have been caused by a problem with the fuel tank.
Bali, a pocket of Hinduism in Muslim-majority Indonesia, attracts millions of foreign visitors every year due to its palm-fringed, tropical beaches and picture-postcard temples. AFP