Taipei, Oct. 7 (CNA) A total of 19 Chinese tourists and 15 grieving family members of five Chinese tourists killed in a bus crash in the central county of Nantou Monday flew back to China Saturday with the help of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF).
The foundation is a quasi-official body set up by Taipei to handle cross-Taiwan Strait exchanges in the absence of official ties.
The family members of the dead tourists had arrived Wednesday to make arrangements for funeral services, which took place in the county Friday.
The tourist group, composed of 40 people from Dalien in northeastern China, was originally scheduled to return home Tuesday.
However, one of the two buses on which they were traveling from Alishan to Shuili skidded off the central cross-island highway and plunged into a ravine when its brakes failed. The accident killed the five Chinese tourists and a Taiwanese tour guide, and left 15 others injured.
Nine of the tourists were still in hospital Saturday.
(By Nick Huang) ENDITEM/J