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Four fishermen missing after Bebinca reaches S China


15:45, June 22, 2013

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Tropical storm Bebinca to hit S China

HAIKOU, June 22 (Xinhua) -- Four fishermen have gone missing in the Beibu Gulf following the arrival of tropical storm Bebinca in south China's Hainan Province, local marine authorities said.

A fishing boat lost contact with the mainland Friday evening with four fishermen aboard, said Li Haifei, deputy director of the press office of the Qiongzhou municipal government.

Search and rescue efforts are under way.

An unlicensed fishing ship was also found sunk off the coast near the city of Qionghai Saturday morning. A fisherman who was aboard the ship has been rescued.

Train and shipping services across the Qiongzhou Strait have been suspended due to the arrival of the stormn.

Passenger ferries have been ordered to dock at a port in Hainan, according to the maritime affairs bureau of Zhanjiang, a coastal city in south China's Guangdong Province that is linked to Hainan by the strait.

Bebinca made landfall in Tanmen Township in Qionghai at 11:10 a.m., the local meteorological department said.

The tropical storm has brought strong rain to Hainan, the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and the South China Sea, with precipitation in Tanmen expected to reach 30 to 60 cm.

The bureau said an emergency response system is in effect, adding that rescue ships have been deployed to ensure safety in nearby waters.

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