One miner died and 31 others remain trapped after the Luotuoshan coal mine was flooded in north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

Water gushed into the pit of the mine where 77 workers were digging tunnels at different depths as part of an infrastructure construction project.

Forty-six miners were rescued and lifted to the ground but the remaining miners were still trapped at the time this article went to press.

The trapped miners were working at two places – 12 people at 189m underground and 19 others at 289m underground, according to China’s Xinhua News.

Rescuers are installing three pumps, each with a pumping capacity of 280m3 of water an hour, and preparing to drill into the shaft to rescue the trapped miners.

The Luotuoshan Coal Mine is owned by Wuhai Energy, a subsidiary of Shenhua Group, one of China’s major mining firms.

Construction of the mine started in 2006 and the mine is expected to produce 1.5 million tons of coal a year.