ROME, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Six people were killed after a luxury cruise ship carrying more than 4,000 ran aground off the Italian coast on Friday, prompting a major rescue operation that is still underway, local press reported early Saturday.
According to the Italian media, the Costa Concordia had left the port of Savona at 7 p.m. (1800 GMT) at the start of a seven-day cruise of the Mediterranean. After just two hours, the ship grounded to a halt off the Tuscan coast.
Italian authorities immediately dispatched rescuers to the scene as passengers were ordered to put on life vests and man life boats as the ship began to list heavily to one side.
The ANSA news agency quoted rescuers as saying that at least six people were dead and an unspecific number of others wounded. The deaths haven't been confirmed by authorities.