PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT WAS ORIGINALLY 4:3

These are the lucky ones.

They're some of the 14 Chinese fishermen initially pulled alive from the sea after their boats were wrecked by Typhoon Wutip.

Another four survivors were rescued later.

That brings to 18 the number of survivors found by Tuesday.

A search is underway for 70 more still missing in the South China Sea.

Officials say four planes and two helicopters have been sent to support a fleet of rescue vessels.

(SOUNDBITE)(Mandarin) ZHANG JIE, SPOKESMAN FOR HAINAN MARITIME BUREAU, SAYING:

"We've already relocated the search area according to where the captain found the wreckage and sent the various rescue ships to the different areas."

The survivors were taken by helicopter from an island in the Paracel group at the centre of a dispute between China and Vietnam.

They've been flown to hospitals in China for treatment.

The fishermen and their missing colleagues were all sailing from the south-eastern Chinese province of Guangdong when their vessels went down.

 

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