7 dead, 14 rescued as dragon boat capsizes in Philippines

Photo: AP

The Philippine coast guard says seven rowers drowned and 14 others were rescued when their dragon boat was suddenly lashed by strong waves and overturned in the central Philippines.

Coast guard spokesman Armand Balilo says the accident happened Wednesday off the popular resort island of Boracay in Aklan province where a local dragon boat team was practicing ahead of a rowing competition.

Balilo says survivors of the accident, including a Chinese and a Russian, were brought by coast guard personnel and authorities to a hospital.

Dragon boat rowing using Chinese-style canoes adorned with dragon designs and a team of paddlers and a drum beater on board have long become popular in the Philippines, with teams competing in domestic or Asian competitions.

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