Turkish firm sells fake life jackets to migrants - Filled with stuffing that absorbs water instead of floating

RomanesEuntDomus

May contain nuts.
True & Honest Fan
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So, a company in Izmir, Turkey, makes and sells fake life jackets to migrants who want to traverse the sea to get to Europe... and said company fills these life jackets with material that soaks up water and drags anyone wearing them down instead of floating:

In the chilly, rough waters of the Aegean Sea, tricky under the best of circumstances and downright treacherous in a flimsy migrant boat, a life vest can make the difference between life and death.

But for the unlucky refugees who would have bought roughly 1,200 life vests being manufactured in Izmir, Turkey, that was a false promise.

The vests were fake, according to Associated Press, citing Turkish reports. They were made of a material that becomes heavy when soaked and would have caused their wearers to sink.

Turkish police raided the workshop in Izmir — a port city that is often a departure point for migrants hoping to make it to Europe — and found workers stuffing the jackets with packaging rather than buoyancy aids, according to the BBC.

Of the four workers, two were young Syrian girls, the BBC said.

More than 1 million migrants traversed the Mediterranean last year, most of them from Syria and most traveling from Turkey to Greece. The sea voyage is just one step of a perilous journey.

According to Hurriyet, a Turkish daily, Syrians tend to congregate in Izmir while they seek passage on a smuggling boat — and the funds to pay for it. They stay in cheap hotels or else on the street. They take work if they can find it. They eat what they can, if they can. They wait for a smuggler’s phone call that often comes in the middle of the night: “We’re leaving now.”


Because smugglers don’t generally provide life jackets, migrants must acquire them on their own. A properly made jacket costs up to $150, according to the BBC. An improperly made jacket may be as little as $15 but has almost no hope of floating. Many migrants, strapped for cash but desperate for some semblance of protection, will still buy them.

These under-the-counter vests are often black, according to Hurriyet — the better for avoiding the attention of authorities at sea.

On Thursday, police in Izmir also collected about 300 substandard vests from Syrian migrants who had already purchased them, Hurriyet reported.

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Sait Güderoğlu, one of Turkey’s top life vest producers, told the newspaper that these fake life vests can endanger wearers even more than no vest at all.

“Such life jackets are made of backpack material and filled with sponge and because sponge is hydrophilic [water absorbing], it drags people down and causes them to drown,” he said.

More than 3,700 people died attempting to cross the Mediterranean during 2015, the International Organization for Migration reported this week. It was the deadliest year on record for migrants and refugees in the region.

And just this week, the bodies of more than 30 people washed ashore in Turkey after their boats capsized in rough water while trying to reach the Greek island of Lesbos, according to the Associated Press. Some of the drowned migrants were children.

Images from the terrible scene show that many of the migrants, including the kids, still wore the life vests that had apparently been of no use to them.
link to article
 

Dysnomia

Absolutely AFABulous
kiwifarms.net
Is this being done on purpose or is someone just trying to make a quick buck off of desperate people? It's sad that so many children died. But with all of the rapes and terror attacks going on in Europe it's probably better that those 3,700 people didn't make it ashore. There's just way too much migration going on and too many dangerous people with no regard or respect for western values.
 

heathercho

Don't underestimate Razor-Blade Remi.
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
The tags... :story:

Well, if they didn't have the life jackets they would also drown. Don't they (well the people in charge) also plan to destroy the boat so they go overboard and people pick them up? Do it legally and you won't need a life vest.
 

AnOminous

I'm not mad at anyone, honest.
True & Honest Fan
Retired Staff
kiwifarms.net
Is this being done on purpose or is someone just trying to make a quick buck off of desperate people? It's sad that so many children died. But with all of the rapes and terror attacks going on in Europe it's probably better that those 3,700 people didn't make it ashore. There's just way too much migration going on and too many dangerous people with no regard or respect for western values.
It would be easy to find shitty materials for life vests. You really have to go out of your way to find something that actually outright drowns people.
 

millais

The Yellow Rose of Victoria, Texas
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Seriously, what is it with Kebabs offing other Kebabs? One second their all "sister/brother this, sister/brother that" and the next second they essentially tie a concrete block around them.
They have many reasons to hate each other. Sunnis against Shias, Persians against Arabs, Kurds against Turks. Even if we nuked the cube, at the end of the day they would still be killing each other for tribal reasons
 

NIA-DOA 2.0

kiwifarms.net
They have many reasons to hate each other. Sunnis against Shias, Persians against Arabs, Kurds against Turks. Even if we nuked the cube, at the end of the day they would still be killing each other for tribal reasons
Hell, you talk if you talk to Kurds they don't even see themselves as Arabs or Kebabs. Most time, they identify as Kurds first, everything else a distant second. One of the reasons that the larger population is so leery of them.
 

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