A coal mine flood in southwestern China trapped 21 miners underground, while a cave-in at another mine Saturday killed at least three workers and left 19 others sealed off, officials said.
Rescuers scrambled to reach the miners at the Niupeng coal mine in the county of Pingtang in Guizhou province on Saturday morning, according to a staffer from the Pingtang work safety bureau. The staffer would only give her surname, Chen, as is typical for officials.
Chen confirmed rescuers were at the mine and the cause of the flood was under investigation, but did not have any details about the rescue.
The official Xinhua News Agency said 29 miners were working in the mine when the flooding occurred and that eight made it out safely.
In a separate coal mine accident also Saturday, at least three miners died, leaving 19 others trapped when portion of the mine collapsed in the city of Heshan in China's southern Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, said an official at the Heshan city work safety bureau who refused to be named.
Chinas coal mines are the world's deadliest. Thousands of miners are killed every year. The massive demand for coal induces many producers to cut corners and sidestep regulations.