|Rescue workers seek for survivors at the site where a pleasure boat carrying 15 people collided with a barge on the Moscow River and sank on July 31, 2011. (Xinhua/Li Yong)
MOSCOW, July 31 (Xinhua) -- A private pleasure boat carrying 15 people sank in the Moscow river after bumping into a cargo barge early Sunday, leaving at least five killed and three others missing, authorities said.
Yuri Besedin, deputy head of Emergency Situations Ministry's Moscow office, confirmed to local press that bodies of the five victims have been recovered from the water. The rest 7 people aboard Lastochka, the boat, were rescued, he added.
The collision occurred at 00:58 a.m. local time (2058 GMT Saturday) as the navigator of the boat spotted the barge too late and "did not manage to escape the collision," officials at the Emergency Situations Ministry were quoted by Itar-tass news agency as saying. The boat sank "within a minute," they said.
Authorities said most passengers aboard were foreigners, mainly from Turkey and the United States and they were trying to identify these passengers.
A rescue operation is still underway as three people on the boat are still unaccounted for.