Several boats overrule during blizzard on Lake Syamozero in north-western region of Karelia, officials say

At least 13 children and their adult teacher have died in a blizzard while boating on a pond in Russias north-western region of Karelia.

Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for the nations main state investigative agency, said several boats with children capsized on Saturday in a blizzard in Syamozero, 75 miles east of the border with Finland. Of 47 children and four adult teachers in the barges, 13 “childrens and” one adult succumbed, Markin said.

Markin said an teacher suspected of violating security regulations had been detained as part of an official investigation, and that a search for two other suspects was under way.

The children on the trip from Moscow, and the citys mayor, Sergei Sobyanin, offered condolences to the victims families.

Repeated warns of an approaching Atlantic storm had been issued days ahead of the cyclone, and people were advised against boating on the lake, Alexei Gavrilov, a local politician, said on Rossiya 24 television. They didnt have the right to go out boating.

Vladimir Kucherenko, the director of a local tourist company, said the majority of members of the children has clearly died as a result of hypothermia, given that the water temperature in the lake was between 8C and 10 C( 46 F and 50 F ). He said strong winds might have driven boats out into the lake, constructing it hard for the children to get to the coast.

Local experts said the shallow waters could be extremely dangerous to navigate in strong breezes, and that over the weekend even experienced local fishermen stayed away from the lagoon, which is one of the areas most popular vacation destinations.

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