The Hubei provincial authority in central China said it has mobilised over 3,000 people and more than 150 ships to join in the rescue effort after a cruise ship carrying 458 people sank in China's Yangtze River on 1 June.

Rescuers said they have found signs of life in the passenger ship as somebody knocked the bottom of the capsized ship. Thirteen people have been rescued as of Tuesday (2 June) morning.

The ship, which departed from the eastern Chinese city Nanjing and was bound for Chongqing Municipality in southwest China, sank "within one or two minutes" after being caught in a cyclone, according to the ship's captain and chief engineer.

The incident occurred at around 9.28pm on 1 June in the Jianli section of the Yangtze, China's longest river, according to the Yangtze River navigation administration.

Authorities have located the site where the ship sank. Part of the ship, which turned upside down, has emerged. More than 30 boats have been dispatched for the rescue operation.

Maritime authorities said most of the passengers are elderly people who had signed up on for a travel tour in Shanghai.

There were 406 passengers, five travel agency tour guides and 47 crew members aboard, according to the administration. All passenger boarded the ship from Nanjing.