Seven miners at Mexico coal pit trapped following collapse and flooding

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Rescue work is under way to find seven miners left trapped after part of the pit they were working in collapsed and flooded.

The accident happened at a small-scale coal mine project in the northern state of Coahuila, which borders Texas in the US, officials said.

Located in the Muzquiz township, the mine is reported to be a deep, narrow, open coal pit with steep earth walls.

The Coahuila Labour Department said it was apparently hit by some sort of collapse and flooding, and Mexico's federal civil defence office said water was being pumped out to allow the rescue operation to continue.

Sharing pictures of the rescue operation on Twitter, La Guardia Nacional said the mine had collapsed and that officers had been deployed to provide security and help at the scene.

It is not the first accident at the small-scale coal mines in the state - in February 2006, 65 workers were killed in a methane gas explosion at a mine in Sabinas, Coahuila.

Rescuers recovered the bodies of two miners but were unable to find the others as they were hampered by tonnes of wood, rock and metal that had fallen, as well as toxic gas.

Meanwhile, two people have died and six are missing in central China following an accident at a coal mine there, according to reports by state broadcaster CCTV.

The "accidental outburst" happened at a mine run by Henan Hebi Coal and Electricity Co late on Friday afternoon local time, and authorities have launched an emergency response plan, CCTV said.

China has been carrying out safety inspections at coal mines across the country, but record high prices have seen production increased to meet supply gaps.