Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist
Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Md Troopers Assoc #20 & Westminster Md Fire Dept Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Caroline and I were recently on the Yangtze River in China where the cruise ship sank #Yangtzeshipsinks

I was recently on the Yangtze where the cruise ship sank last Mon eve June 1, 2015. Prayers for #Yangtzeshipsinks

Recently, Caroline and I were on Damazhou waterway section of the Yangtze River in China on Sunday evening, April 26, 2015; where the ferry boat sank last Monday evening, June 1, 2015.

It is widely reported that the ferry went down in a storm just after 9 p.m. about three-quarters of the way between the Three Gorges Dam, just west of Yichang, and Wuhan – at a spot in the river very near Jianli, in Jianli County in Hubei Province.
Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims of this disaster; their families and to the Chinese authorities, military and emergency responders. Hopefully many more passengers will be saved and the loss of life be kept to a minimum.

Hopefully, no-one gets hurt responding to the disaster. We pray for the safety of the emergency responders.

Caroline and I were sailing on the Yangtze River at that very spot at that very time of the evening, on Sunday evening, April 26, 2015. According to multiple accounts, “The Yangtze is the third-longest river in the world, stretching 3,915 miles from Tibet all the way to the East China Sea…”

I am looking forward to going through our pictures to see if we have a few photos of the Damazhou waterway section of the Yangtze River just east of Jianli.

On Wednesday, April 22, 2015, we flew from Xi’an to Chongqing. We had landed in Chongqing, China late that mourning to board a Viking river ship, “Emerald.” From Chongqing, we traveled on the Yangtze River for the next five days – through Sunday, April 26, 2015.

Our trip had begun in Beijing on Thursday, April 16, 2015, after about a day of travel. After a few days in Beijing, we flew to Xi’an on Monday, April 20, 2015.

We then flew to Chongqing and get on the Viking cruise ship, “Emerald.” We spent five days on the Yangtze. We arrived in Wuhan on Monday, April 26, 2015. From Wuhan we flew to Shanghai.

As an aside, for a story for another day, we flew in China three times. Flying in China is an adventure. We flew from Beijing to Xi’an; Xi’an to Chongqing; and from Wuhan to Shanghai.

The three flights inside of China are also in addition to the two flights it took to get to China and the two flights home from Shanghai, where we spent two-and-a-half hours on the tarmac before the 14 hour flight even began. That said, I was good-to-go – I watched Bollywood for most of the trip.

On Saturday, April 25, 2015, we visited the Three Gorges Dam to the west of Yichang on the Yangtse River. From the Three Georges Dam, we sailed east to Jingzhou, where we visited an elementary school on Sunday, April 26, 2015.

The balance of Sunday we continued to travel east on the Yangtze, by Jianli, towards our destination in Wuhan. Jianli is about three-quarters of the way from Jingzhou to Yueyang. Yueyang is halfway between Yichang and Wuhan.

At Jianli, the river does a wide but relatively tight turn. The river is very deep – around 50-feet deep, a little over three-quarters of a mile wide and the current is very strong. Just south and east of Jianli, where the ferry sank, the Yangtze River crosses wide expanses of rural and agricultural land.

Go here for coverage by The Guardian: “Cyclone hits Chinese cruise on Yangtze River: 400 missing – live updates” - -

Washington Post: “Chinese ship carrying more than 400 tourists sinks on Yangtze River” - - According to Sarah Kaplan, writing for the Washington Post, in an article published at 4:40 a.m. – which would be 4:40 p.m. in China; “Hundred[s] of passengers remain unaccounted for more than 12 hours after a ship carrying 458 people sank in China’s Yangtze River, according to Xinhua, the Chinese state news agency.

“The captain and chief engineer, who were reportedly among at least a dozen passengers rescued, told Xinhua that the ship sank within one or two minutes after being caught in a cyclone around 9:30 p.m. Monday. Another five people are confirmed dead.

“The four-tier Dongfangzhixing or “Eastern Star,” was carrying five travel agency workers, 47 crew members and 406 Chinese passengers. Most of the passengers were between 50 and 80 years old and were traveling as part of a tour arranged by the state-owned Shanghai Xiehe Travel Agency. The youngest was only three, according to Xinhua…”

According to the Washington Post, “The boat was [in-route] from the eastern city of Nanjing to the southwestern city of Chongqing, more than 850 miles away. It capsized in Jianli County in Hubei Province, about 600 miles west of Shanghai…”


“The Eastern Star is considered one of the best passenger ships in China, according to CCTV. It’s owned by the Chongqing Eastern Shipping Corporation (also translated as Chongqing Oriental Ferry Company), which runs ships along tourist routes in the popular Three Gorges area, a scenic river region framed by mountains and lush landscapes. About 250 feet long and four stories high, the Eastern Star can hold up to 540 passengers — nearly 100 more than were on board Monday. And initial investigations found that the ship was equipped with enough life vests for everyone on board, Reuters reported.

The Yangtze, China’s longest river and the world’s third longest, is a popular waterway for shipping and travel. It’s also the site of the Three Gorges Dam, a massive hydroelectric project about 200 miles upriver from Jianli…”

The BBC has more information here: “Chinese ship capsizes on Yangtze with hundreds missing,” - -

CNN’s coverage may be found here: “Cruise ship sinks in China's Yangtze River with 458 aboard,” By Jethro Mullen and Steven Jiang, CNN:

The New York Times has extensive coverage here: “Hundreds Missing After Chinese Cruise Ship Sinks on Yangtze By EDWARD WONGJUNE 1, 2015”

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