BEIJING — The dying toll in an avalanche that buried automobiles outdoors a freeway tunnel in Tibet has risen to 13 with rescue efforts persevering with, authorities stated Friday.

Photos from the scene on the exit of the tunnel connecting the town of Nyingchi in Tibet’s southwest with outlying Medog county confirmed about half a dozen backhoes digging by snow as much as 3 meters (10 ft) deep.

Tons of snow and ice collapsed onto the mouth of the tunnel on Tuesday night, trapping drivers of their automobiles. Lots of them had been headed residence for China’s Lunar New 12 months vacation that begins Sunday.

Authorities say some 1,000 rescuers and dozens of emergency automobiles have taken half within the effort, with the central authorities’s Ministry of Emergency Administration sending a crew to help.

Nyingchi lies at an elevation of about 3,040 meters (9,974 ft), about 5 hours drive from the regional capital Lhasa alongside a freeway opened in 2018. Nighttime temperatures throughout winter routinely drop nicely beneath freezing.

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