Boats Capsize in Russia, Killing 11 Children, 1 Adult
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At least 11 children and one adult died Saturday when the boats they were in capsized on a lake in a popular vacation spot in Russia, The Associated Press reported.
The children were visiting the northwestern region of Karelia from Moscow, officials told AP on Sunday.
The Daily Mail reported that the children were between the ages of 12 and 15.
They were part of a group of 47 children and four adult instructors who went out on boats together, a spokesman for Russia's main state investigative agency Vladimir Markin told AP. Markin said several of the boats overturned in a storm in Syamozero, which is roughly 75 miles east of the border with Finland.
Markin told AP that an instructor who is suspected of violating safety rules was detained.
According to AP, regional lawmaker Alexei Gavrilov said on Rossiya 24 television that officials had issued several warnings against boating on the lake due to a pending Atlantic cyclone.
"They didn't have the right to go out boating," Gavrilov said, according to AP.
The director of a local tourist company, Vladimir Kucherenko, told AP that most of children died from long exposure to cold water. He said water temperatures were 46-50 degrees Fahrenheit. He said strong winds also might have pushed the boats across the lake and made it difficult for children to swim to the shore.
"I would like to look the person who allowed them to go boating in the eye," Kucherenko said in televised remarks, according to AP. "It was suicidal."
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