SEWOL FAULTS IGNORED BY COMPANY

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SEOUL: A probe into South Korea’s ferry disaster has heard that warnings over the ship’s seaworthiness were ignored, prosecutors said on Wednesday, as rescuers worked to recover more than 90 people still missing two weeks after it sank. The confirmed death toll from the accident stood at 210, with 92 unaccounted for, the coastguard said. Prosecutors investigating the disaster on Tuesday questioned the regular captain of the 6,825-ton Sewol, who was on leave when it capsized April 16 with 476 people on board—most of them high school students. Senior Prosecutor Yang Jong-Jin said the captain, identified only as Shin, told investigators that he had warned the shipping company of serious stability problems with the Sewol. The Chonghaejin Marine Co. purchased the then 18-year old ferry from Japan in 2012 and refurbished it, building extra passenger cabins on the third, fourth and fifth decks. Shin said the renovations altered the balance of the ship and undermined its anti-rolling ability.

AFP

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