21 Feb, 2022 @ 18:45
1 min read

Villa de Pitanxo: Nine bodies recovered from Spanish fishing boat disaster in Canada identified

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Aerial Imagery from Search area

NINE people who were killed after a Spanish fishing boat sank in the north-east coast of Canada have now been identified.

An international operation was launched to locate the crew of the Villa de Pitanxo, a boat from the north-western Galicia region,  when it went down 450km off the Newfoundland coast on Tuesday (February 15) . 

A total of nine bodies were recovered in a search operation from a crew of 24. 

Three members of the crew were rescued and 12 are still missing.

Of those found dead, five were confirmed to be Spanish, three were Peruvians and one was from Ghana. 

The families of deceased sailors Rogelio Franco, Miguel Lumbres, Diego Andres More, Daniel Fernando More, William Arevalo Perez and Ricardo Alfonso Cruz Flore have all been informed. 

A sailor from Huelva named Jose Antonio Cordero, chef Fernando Santome from Bueu, Galicia, and Ghanaian Apaanah Pelungo Zure were also among the dead. 

Efforts to find remaining crew members who were lost in the eastern Atlantic ended on Thursday, February 17. 

The crew was made up of 16 Spaniards, five Peruvians and three from Ghana, according to Spain’s maritime rescue service.

The Villa de Pitanxo sent out a distress signal just after midnight local time on Tuesday. 

It is as yet unclear what caused it to sink. 

Spain’s prime minister, Pedro Sanchez, tweeted that he was sending ‘all [his] love to their families’. 

In Madrid, parliament observed a minute of silence.

Alberto Nunez Feijoo, the regional president of Galicia, also said his thoughts were with the families of the crew.

“We’re following the terrible news that has reached us from Canada of the sinking of the Villa de Pitanxo, a boat from Marín,” he said. 

The Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Luis Planas, said it was the biggest tragedy in the fishing industry since Islamar III, a sardine boat, sank off the Canary Islands in 1984, claiming 26 lives.


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