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SAPPORO (Kyodo) Three college students who were apparently swept away by a flood Sunday night were found dead Wednesday morning by a stream on a mountain in Hokkaido, police said.

Police identified the deceased as Yuji Araki, 21, of Saitama Prefecture, and Hisanori Miyagishima, 20, and Hiroshi Kanno, 18, both of Chiba Prefecture. They were members of a Tokyo University of Science mountaineering club.

According to the police, the three and another member of the club entered the Hidaka mountain range Aug. 9 and were camping Sunday night near a stream at an elevation of 1,520 meters on Mount Nakano when a flash flood hit their tent and swept them away.

Only Makio Koike, 23, of Chiba Prefecture, managed to get out of the river. He was making his way down the mountain when he ran into a fisherman Tuesday, who got in contact with the police.

“We were in a tent when a sudden rush of water swept over us,” Koike told reporters.

Police searching by helicopter found the three early Wednesday downstream from their campsite. All three had drowned.

“It is very regrettable. We are determined not to repeat the same mistake,” said Masaaki Ueki, vice president of Tokyo University of Science.

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