BEIJING, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Mainland tourists made 1.32 million trips to Taiwan from January to August this year, surpassing the number for the whole of last year, according to the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council.
Spokeswoman Fan Liqing said at a regular press conference that the number of mainland tourists traveling to the island is expected to surge during the upcoming National Day holiday, which begins on Oct. 1.
As more tourists are heading to the island, Fan expressed concern over the safety of mainland tourists.
A total of 30 tourists from the Chinese mainland were injured in a road accident in Taiwan's eastern Hualien county on Monday. Earlier this year,another two road accidents occurred in the same area, killing two mainland tourists.
Fan asked relevant authorities in Taiwan to take practical measures to improve safety for mainland tourists.
The Chinese mainland is currently the largest source of tourists for Taiwan. Mainland tourists account for about 30 percent of the island's visitors.
Taiwan is the third-largest source of tourists for the mainland, accounting for 6 percent of tourists received by the mainland.
The total number of tourists traveling between both sides surged from 4.7 million in 2008 to 7.05 million last year, representing an annual growth rate of 14 percent, official statistics show.
Mainlanders started traveling to Taiwan in groups in July 2008, while individual travelers received permission to visit the island in June 2011.