Hippo capsizes boat in Malawi, leading to 7 deaths and 17 people missing

Seven people, including a one-year-old boy, have died and 17 people went missing after a boat carrying 37 people hit a hippopotamus on the Shire River in Malawi on Monday 15h May 2023.

The incident took place when the boat, travelling from the village of Mlolo to the town of Nsanje, collided with a hippopotamus near the village of Chikwawa. Consequently, the boat capsized, plunging its occupants into the water.

Prompt response from local villagers led to the successful rescue of thirteen individuals who were pulled from the water.

However, the fate of others remains uncertain, and they are presumed to have died in the incident.

The Shire River is a significant waterway in Malawi and is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including hippopotamuses, crocodiles, and elephants.

Unfortunately, boat accidents are not uncommon due to the congested nature of the river, with numerous boats and vessels navigating its waters.

The government of Malawi has expressed its condolences to the families of the victims affected by this tragic incident.

Furthermore, an official investigation has been initiated to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the collision and to implement measures aimed at preventing similar accidents in the future.