23 backpackers missing in Central China

Updated: 2013-08-04 17:40


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WUHAN - Authorities in central China's Hubei province are searching for 23 backpackers who went missing in a mountainous scenic spot on Saturday.

Rescuers expressed concerns over the missing tourists' safety, as a severe rainstorm pummeled the Huangniuyan Scenic Spot, where the travelers disappeared, on Saturday night.

Police in the city of Yichang received a report Saturday night from a bus driver who said that his passengers had not returned from the scenic spot near the Three Gorges Dam.

The travelers entered the site Saturday morning, the driver said, adding that contact with the group was lost in the evening.

An initial probe showed that the travelers are from Yichang and nearby cities.

Municipal police and firefighters are working with local residents to search for the missing tourists.