Pic: AP.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean officials say their earlier conclusion that the sunken ferry had made a sharp turn shortly before the disaster was incorrect, and that the vessel changed course much more gradually.

Data from the ferry Sewol’s automatic identification system, an on-board transponder used for tracking, shows that the ship made a J-shaped turn before listing heavily and ultimately sinking last week, leaving more than 300 people dead or missing.

A ministry of ocean and fisheries official had said Friday that the vessel had taken a sharp turn. But on Tuesday a ministry official said in a phone interview that the AIS data had been incomplete. He says the true path of the ship became clear when the data was fully restored.

The official declined to elaborate or give his name.

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