CAIRO - At least 15 people drowned when an unlicensed ferry capsized in Egypt’s Nile river north of Cairo overnight, the official MENA news agency reported on Friday.

Rescue teams have recovered 15 bodies and were searching for survivors in the Kafr al-Sheikh province north of Cairo, the agency reported, adding that 17 people were believed to have been on board.

The provincial governor Al-Sayed Nasr told AFP that the boat, which was not licensed to work as a ferry, had been too small to accommodate the passengers. The accident came months after at least 36 Egyptians were killed when a party boat collided with a cargo ship in the Nile. Following that accident in July, the government pledged to “achieve discipline” on the waterway.

It banned the use of loud speakers on vessels hired for private ceremonies and on ferries transporting people. The cabinet also decided not to build new berths along the river. The Nile, which runs the length of Egypt, is dotted with cargo ships, party boats and fishing vessels.