"The Nanjing municipal maritime relief centre sent a rescue team to the scene, and all 18 crew members were safely taken out."
Beijing, May 12 - Eighteen crew members of a ship were rescued shortly before their vessel sank in the Yangtze river in China, maritime authorities said Sunday.
The vessel, Xinchuan 8, was transporting 12,500 tonnes of limestone from Tongling in east Anhui province to Luoyuan coastal county in southeast Fujian province, when it hit a bridge pier Sunday morning, Xinhua reported.
The ship collided with one of the piers of the Nanjing Yangtze river bridge while trying to pass through.
The vessel, belonging to Rushan Xinchuan Shipping and Transportation Co., Ltd., was damaged in the collision and water began to leak in.
The Nanjing municipal maritime relief centre sent a rescue team to the scene, and all 18 crew members were safely taken out.
The ship sank around 5 a.m..