Barisal, Bangladesh (BBN) – At least 33 people went missing as a passenger bus with some 55 passengers onboard plunged into a river when it was boarding a ferry in the country’s southern Barisal district.
“We fear as high as 33 passengers are missing . . . rescue efforts have been launched to retrieve them,” district police chief Mohammad Ehsanullah reportedly confirmed.
But witnesses said local divers found no body inside the bus and the rescuers feared the strong current in the Rangamatia River near the Bay of Bengal washed away the victims while lack of daylight hampered the rescue campaign.
He said a rescue vessel of the state-run Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) was asked to reach the scene to retrieve the 32-seat wobbly bus rolled into the river severing the poor safety rope of the ferry as its driver was unable to stop due to apparent brake failure. 
The survivers and witnesses said many passengers, mostly women and children, were sitting inside the bus as it plunged.
BBN/SSR/AD-10Apr13-9:09 pm (BST)