There were no Filipinos among the passengers of the Chinese ship that capsized in the Yangtze river, initial reports reaching the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
“We have not received reports of any Filipinos among the passengers,” DFA spokesman Charles Jose told GMA News Online on Wednesday.
At least 465 people, many of them elderly Chinese tourists, were aboard the Eastern Star when it capsized in the Jianli section of the Yangtze on June 1, according to a report on Reuters.
Police said the ship was not overloaded and had the required number of life vests for its passengers, who were headed to the Jiangsu province capital of Chongquing from Nanjing.
South China Morning Post reported that the four-tier Eastern Star, capable of carrying 534 people, may have been the victim of a tornado near the area of the incident, which generated wave heights of 14 meters at wind speeds of 117km/h.
Experts say that its ship design- similar to that of the ill-fated Costa Concordia in 2012- may have caused the ship to overturn as it corrected its course to avoid the storm.
Divers are still searching for survivors and remains of the Easter Star’s crew and passengers.