A collision between a Viking River Cruises ship and another boat on the Danube Wednesday evening has killed at least seven tourists from the other vessel and left another 21 missing, according to multiple media reports.
The collision took place Wednesday evening local time between the Viking Sigyn and a boat from local tour operator Panorama Deck in Budapest near the famous Hungarian Parliament Building and the Margaret Bridge.
Reuters reports that the two ships collided during a rainstorm late Wednesday that had left the Danube with high water levels, causing the Panorama Deck boat to capsize and sink.
“I am not inclined to say there is no hope, so I would rather say there is a minimal chance (of finding survivors),” a spokesperson for the Hungarian national ambulance service told m1 state television, according to Reuters.
CNN reports that the Panorama Deck boat had approximately 35 people onboard when it capsized and sank. The seven tourists who died were from South Korea, and none of them were wearing life jackets. Hungarian authorities have reportedly opened a criminal inquiry into the sinking, with the role of the Viking ship also reportedly under investigation.
According to NPR, video from the scene shows that the two ships approached each other as they passed Margaret Bridge, when the Viking Sigyn’s bow came into contact with the Panorama Deck’s rear quarter, sending it sideways. Rescue efforts, though hampered by continued foul weather, have been extended far south of Budapest.
Video from YouTube via NPR
Luxury Travel Advisor has reached out to Viking River Cruises for comment and will update when we learn more.