A large search and rescue mission has been launched after it was discovered two cruise passengers were missing from a luxury liner when it docked in Sydney Harbour.
The young couple from New South Wales, a man of 30 and a 27-year-old woman, were last seen on Wednesday night.
They were discovered missing when the Carnival Spirit docked at Sydney's Circular Quay on Thursday morning at the end of a 10-day journey.
Peter Taylor, spokesman for the ship's operator, Carnival Cruise Lines, told the Daily Telegraph: "The guests in question were travelling with family and friends, and initial reports indicate that the couple was last seen onboard the vessel last night (Wednesday)."
A search co-ordinated by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority consisting of police boats, a plane and a helicopter, is concentrating on a 300-square-nautical mile area of sea north of Sydney.
According to Fox News, a surveillance video showed that the couple fell from the ship's mid deck, when the ship was about 65 nautical miles off the coast of Forster, a city 185 miles north of Sydney.
New South Wales state Police Superintendent Mark Hutchings said: "This is a tragic event at the moment, but we're holding out hope we might be able to find these people alive."
According to the Daily Mail, the 959ft, 88,500-ton vessel has "a host of areas for outdoor fun, including a corkscrew water slide, four swimming pools, a miniature golf course, jogging track and a sport court".
Carnival Cruise Lines is a subsidiary of Carnival Corp, the world's largest cruise operator, which also owned the Costa Concordia, the liner that ran aground off the coast of Italy last year, killing 32 people.
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