Bali: Explosion on tourist boat kills two people

Police investigators examine the Gili Cat 2 boat following an explosion off Bali, Indonesia, on 15 SeptemberImage copyrightAP
Image caption Officials said the dead woman was hit by debris

An explosion on a tourist boat off the Indonesian island of Bali has killed at least one German

tourist and injured 19 others, police say.

It was not immediately clear what caused the explosion but officials said it was not a bomb.

The boat was carrying at least 30 passengers, all foreigners, and four crew, and was heading to the island of Gili Trawangan.

Indonesia has a poor maritime safety record and fatal accidents are common.

Among the passengers were 17 Britons and tourists from France, Italy, Portugal, Ireland and Spain, Agence France-Presse reported.

The explosion on the Gili Cat 2 boat happened 200m after it departed Padang Bai port in eastern Bali, according to police.

Image copyrightAP
Image caption The explosion hit the boat five minutes after it departed Bali, police say
Image copyrightEPA
Image caption Bali is a popular destination among foreign tourists

“Based on the testimony [from passengers] and from what I saw on the scene, the explosion came from the fuel tank,” local police chief Sugeng Sudarso said.

“Above it was a battery, maybe there was a short circuit that affected the fuel tank.”

He said the passenger died from head injuries.

A spokesman for the British embassy in Jakarta said it was providing assistance to British nationals injured in the blast, AFP added.

Last year, dozens of tourists were injured when small explosions hit a ferry crossing between Bali and the neighbouring holiday island of Lombok. The explosions were thought to have come from the fuel tank of the ferry.

But Indonesia has also been targeted by Islamist militants. In January, gun and bomb attacks on the capital, Jakarta, left four civilians and four attackers dead.

In Bali itself, 202 people – mostly foreigners – died in 2002 when two bombs ripped through an area popular with tourists.

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