Twelve bodies found after South China Sea typhoon shipwreck
Twelve bodies have been found following a shipwreck in the South China Sea over the weekend that left the crew of 30 missing, Chinese authorities said Monday.
The announcement came days after a mainland engineering vessel Fujing 001 broke into two pieces about 300 km southwest of Hong Kong on Saturday during a typhoon.
"As of 3:30 pm on July 4, rescue forces found and recovered 12 bodies, suspected to be of victims who drowned, in an area around 50 nautical miles southwest of the site where the vessel sank," said the Guangdong Maritime Search and Rescue Centre in a notice on Monday.
"The relevant departments are stepping up identity confirmation work," the notice added.
Three people had been rescued on Saturday and one more in the early hours of Monday.
Dramatic footage provided by Government Flying Service showed a person being airlifted onto a helicopter while waves crashed over the deck of the semi-submerged ship below.
A pilot said South China Sea rescue ships have been deployed, as Hong Kong first sent the fixed-wing aircraft to identify the rescue location, then communicated and coordinated with the mainland authorities.
Currently, seven planes, 246 boats and 498 fishing vessels have been dispatched to search for the remaining missing persons, the Monday statement said.
Typhoon Chaba formed in the central part of the South China Sea and on Saturday afternoon made landfall in Guangdong province.