WELLINGTON: Rescue efforts are underway in New Zealand where several people, including Chinese tourists, are feared dead after a bus rolled over on a highway in North Island.
Police said on Wednesday (Sep 4) more than 20 people were in the vehicle when it crashed and rolled on a highway about 20km west of Rotorua - a popular tourist town known for its hot springs.
"Police can advise there have been fatalities in the crash, however the number cannot yet be confirmed," they said.
An official at the Chinese Embassy in Wellington told Reuters that Chinese nationals were on board the bus, and they are working with the police to ascertain the number of casualties.
Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported that the embassy in New Zealand has launched an emergency plan and the ambassador is heading to the scene.
The New Zealand Herald reported that at least six people were feared dead, and some passengers were still trapped in the wreckage.
St John Ambulance service said five helicopters and five ambulances had been dispatched and patients were being transported to hospitals around the region.
It said two people had serious injuries, four moderate and a further 15 were undergoing assessment.