Five people stranded by a snowstorm in Tibet Autonomous Region
were rescued early on Sunday morning, while 11 rescue team members
remained trapped for a third day, a local police spokesman
The five were found in two vehicles on Saturday night in the
Ngari Prefecture suffering altitude sickness symptoms after being
trapped more than seven hours, said spokesman Kang Jinai. It took
rescuers four hours to evacuate them to nearby Shiquanhe town.
Snow began hitting the area on Friday with the maximum depth
exceeding 30 centimeters. Traffic on the Ngari section of the
mountainous highway linking Xinjiang and Tibet has been blocked
since that day.
By Sunday noon, local police and government staff had rescued 61
However, an 11-member team, previously sent to save others
stranded by the snow, ended up getting stuck themselves by the
heavy snow on Friday. They are in good shape, however, for they had
brought with them sufficient provisions and medicine.
An operation to rescue them was hindered by low temperature and
Ngari Prefecture, with an average height of 4,500 meters above
sea level, is very sensitive to climate change because of its high
altitude on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
(Xinhua News Agency January 21, 2008)