A fishing boat leaves from Utoro port for searching for the missing tour boat "Kazu 1" in Shari, Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan in this photo taken by Kyodo on April 24, 2022. Mandatory credit Kyodo/via REUTERS

TOKYO, April 24 (Reuters) – Four people from the Japanese tour boat that went missing with 26 people on board had been found early on Sunday, Japan’s coast guard said, although it was unclear if they were still alive.

Three were discovered by a police helicopter near the tip of the Shiretoko peninsula, early on Sunday morning, the coast guard said, with the fourth spotted by a coast guard aircraft in the same area about 30 minutes later.

The condition of the four people was unknown, and it was not clear whether they were on land or still at sea when found.

A coast guard official had no further information.

Authorities were using aircraft and patrol boats to search for the passengers and crew of the “Kazu I” after it ran into trouble off the peninsula, which is famous for its wildlife and dramatic coastline. read more

The coast guard first heard from the crew of boat on Saturday afternoon that water was flooding into the vessel. It was last heard from around two hours later, when it contacted its operating company to say it was keeling at a 30-degree angle, Kyodo news reported earlier.

The crew said those on board were wearing life jackets, media said.

There were 24 passengers and two crew members on board. Two of the passengers were children.

Reporting by David Dolan; Editing by Leslie Adler

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Source: Reuters

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