Two Israeli tourists killed in Chile boating accident
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Two Israeli tourists killed in Chile boating accident

Four Israelis in serious condition, 10 said to be lightly injured; group was rafting in Torres del Paine national park when captain reportedly lost control of vessel

A boat that overturned in Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, on February 23, 2019 (Chilean Navy via Channel 13 screen capture)
A boat that overturned in Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, on February 23, 2019 (Chilean Navy via Channel 13 screen capture)

Two Israeli women were killed when their tour group was involved in a river rafting accident in southern Chile late Saturday, Israel’s Foreign Ministry said Sunday morning.

The two women were aged 61 and 71, and their families have been informed.

Local media reported 16 Israelis were involved in the incident. Four of the injured were in a serious condition, the ministry said in the statement. The remainder of the injured were suffering from light wounds.

The killed and wounded were all in their 60s and 70s, part of a tour group with the Massaot tour company that was rafting on a river in the Torres del Paine national park when their boat overturned in the water.

The Rio Paine river in the Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, February 2011. (Wikipedia/Evelyn Proimos/CC BY)

They were all transported to local hospitals. Acting Foreign Minister Israel Katz spoke with Hayet and said that if any of the wounded need to be flown back to Israel for treatment, all necessary arrangements would be made, the Walla news site reported.

Local police said an investigation had been opened into the incident.

According to unconfirmed initial reports, the boat overturned after the captain steering the raft lost control and crashed it into a fence.

Israel’s consul in the region, Leon Suissa, was on his way to the region, the ministry said.

Hayet said he had spoken with some of the wounded.

“All the wounded have been taken to hospitals in southern Chile and are now being cared for,” He told Army Radio Sunday morning. “The consul is headed there to help. We wish [the injured] a quick recovery.”

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