Sinking of Bulgaria Cruise Ship - Volga River - RussiaNumerous news sources are reporting that a cruise ship carrying 173 passengers and crew sank in Russia’s Volga river today. 

The sinking involved the Bulgaria cruise ship, which had 140 passengers and 33 crewmembers aboard.

To date, there have been reports of two confirmed dead bodies recovered and 96 people unaccounted for after the Bulgaria sank at 1358 local time (0858 GMT) in the Tatarstan region, 500 miles east of Moscow. 

A helicopter and two rescue vessels are reportedly at the scene of the sinking.

According to the Mail Online, the Bulgaria sank near the village of Syukeevo in the Kansko-Ustinovsky district near the region’s capital, Kazan. The Bulgaria belongs to a local tourism company and was on its way from the town of Bulgar to the regional capital, Kazan.

The ship was built in 1955 in Czechoslovakia.

 July 9, 2011 Update

Russian authorities initiated a criminal investigation into the river sinking, according to the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation.  This Russian website identified the operator of the river cruise as  "Argo Rech Tours."  

There are conflicting accounts of the number of people missing.  The Russian website states that 169 people have been rescued, although most news accounts state that there are 80 -100 still missing. 

Bulgaria Cruise Ship - Volga River Sinking- Russia

July 10, 2011 Update:

Russian website has heart wrenching photographs of the survivors.  Updated information from Russia regarding the recovery efforts can be located here.

July 11, 2011 Update The Rianovisti newspaper in Russia reports that although the Russian Transport Ministry stated that the vessel had passed a regular "technical inspection" on June 15th and was certified for further use, investigators discovered that the ship "had a list to starboard and its engine was broken" when it left port.  It was "heavily overloaded with passengers."  There now appears to have been 196 people on the cruise ship.  Only 79 were rescued.  The video below depicts disturbing images of some of the deceased passengers.


Photo credits: 

Top:  Survivors of Bulgaria sinking – Rianovisti newspaper

Bottom:  AFP, Mikhail Mozzhukin 

Video credit:  The Guardian newspaper

  • Ilya

    Double-deck is a correct photo
    Ship sank much closer to Bolgar than to Kazan.

  • Info

    The 2nd photo seems to be correct

  • ben

    shit i think my aunt was on that… do you guys know if there will be a passengers list? i need to know asap

  • Robin

    The first photo is of one of the Vodohod ships that mainly cruise the Moscow – St Petersburg route (although some do cruise the Volga downstream of Yaroslavl) The ships in the first photo typically accommodate up to 250 passengers plus crew.
    Thus the second photo is more likely to be more representative of the Bulgaria.

  • May God hav mercey on them. R.I.P

  • anh

    The one i love went back to Moscow last week, we havent contact with each other for a few days recently. Could anyone give me the full list of missing people. Im freaking out. I really appreciate.

  • anh

    Hello, my bestfriend just came back to Russia last week, she ‘s traveling around Russia. Her name is Алевтина Бобылева (Alevtina Bobyleva), from Moscow. I dont know if she was on that cruise or not. I cant reach her. COuld anyone help me to get the list of passengers please? I REALLY appreciate.

  • Anselmo Santos

    Se ha hundido un barco turístico durante un crucero por el Volga, cerca de Kazán.
    Aquí te envío información sobre el asunto.