Category: World / October 1, 2012 2:43 PM EDT
At least eight people are dead after a ferry carrying more than 120 passengers sank just south of Hong Kong late on Monday (October 1) following a collision with a tug boat.
A government spokesperson said divers searched through the night for more than a dozen people missing, adding that 101 people had been rescued so far from the scene, off Lamma Island, an area popular with tourists.
The ferry, belonging to The Hong kong Electric Company, was carrying company staff and family members on an evening cruise to watch fireworks at Victoria Harbour.
The ferry left Lamma Island at 8.15 pm to watch the fireworks, but within a few minutes, a tugboat smashed into the vessel.
Survivors were being taken to hospitals on Hong Kong Island and Lamma Island, some of them suffering from hypothermia, a paramedic at the Queen Mary Hospital on Hong Kong Island said.
The accident occurred over a long holiday weekend in Hong Kong, celebrating both the Mid-Autumn Festival and China's National Day on October 1.
Thousands of Hong Kong residents live on outlying islands such as Lamma, which lies about 3 km (2 miles) southwest of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong is one of the world's busiest shipping channels, although serious accidents are rare.