I saw this story break on twitter but I wanted to wait until the authorities had the light of day to do a real count of the injuries and fatalaties but alas this is Thailand, and so the authorities (who are they anyway?) are doing nothing but covering up anything they can and causing confusion amongst the media.
Yesterday evening a ferry making its way back from Koh Lang to Pattaya (a 30 minute journey) encountered engine problems/the water pump stopped working, making the passengers (of whom there were too many) all go up onto the top deck. Boat taking on water + overloaded top deck = capsize and sink. Initial reports are suggesting that there were too many passengers (some are saying there were double the capacity) and therefore not enough life jackets, and that six people (3 Thai, 2 Russian, 1 Chinese) sadly died.
It is a common thing to be pushed and shoved into an overcrowded bus/songtheaw/boat when travelling in Thailand. I’ve done silent head counts when we’ve been on our way to Koh Lipe and there are always more people than life jackets. I always make sure I have one near, but maybe next time we are on the water I might just put it on.