PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- One person died and 14 others were rescued after an overloaded boat traveling without authorization capsized near Haiti’s southern coast, authorities said Saturday.
Among the survivors is a person who was hospitalized in critical condition, according to Haiti's Civil Protection Agency. It said authorities are still looking for an undetermined number of people.
The boat departed late Friday from the town of Anse-a-Pitres near the border that Haiti and the Dominican Republic share. It capsized as it traveled west to the southern coastal town of Marigot, said Auguste Sony, an inspector with Haiti’s Maritime and Navigation Service.
He told The Associated Press that the boat was laden with 600 sacks of flour and more than 15 people, so he did not authorize it to leave the port given its heavy load and reported the situation to his superiors.
Sony said the captain ignored his orders and set off, insisting that he ferry people to Marigot.
“It’s very sad that the captain didn’t listen,” he said.
Heavy rains have pelted Haiti since late Friday, and the inclement weather is expected to continue until late Saturday.