Sewol sinking investigation will begin in May

An investigation into the causes of the sinking of Korean ferry Sewol will begin during the second half of May. An eight-member panel, established in March by special law. Will seek to determine why the 6,800 ton ship capsized off the southwest coast of South Korea in 2014, killing 304 people, the vast majority of them schoolchildren.

Panel chairman Kim Chang-joon said that “it takes time to allocate the budget and recruit officials”, noting that “we now have the Sewol on land. We will compare the existing records with the ship and verify them”.

The wreck is now in dry dock at Mokpo Port, 410 km south of Seoul; a complex salvage operation raised the ferry whole and then transported it to Mokpo on a semi-submersible.

Since divers began investigating the drained vessel they have found two mobile phones and hundreds of personal belongings, but none of the still-missing nine bodies. Another search is taking place at the site of the sinking.