An open-pit mine collapsed in the northern Inner Mongolia region, China has killed at least two people, leaving more than 50 missing, reported the country’s Xinhua News Agency.

The mine, operated by the local mining company Xinjing Coal Mining, collapsed in a landslide.

China’s national media outlet CCTV unveiled footage that showed a flood of rock and soil from the mountain storming into the mine pit, burying several excavators and dump trucks.

A rescue team of three hundred personnel are working at the site, using heavy machinery and rescue dogs, to search for the trapped miners, said the publication.

A hospitalised miner told CCTV: “I had just started work at 1:15 in the afternoon when I realised that rocks were falling from the mountain.

“I saw that the situation was getting more and more serious, and an evacuation was organised, but it was too late, the mountain just collapsed.”

China’s President Xi Jinping has ordered search and rescue efforts, although a second landslide in the evening hampered the work to find survivors.

Xi urged to determine the cause of the accident as soon as possible and hold the relevant people accountable, while avoiding any loopholes in management.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang instructed the Work Safety Committee of the State Council and the Ministry of Emergency Management to implement workplace safety measures.

He also urged to intensify efforts to rectify major hidden dangers, and resolutely prevent major accidents from happening.

According to Reuters’ report, local governments of Inner Mongolia, Shanxi and Shaanxi regions have ordered coal miners to immediately conduct safety checks and inspections.

The mine, located near the town of Alxa League was previously an underground mine and was converted into an open-pit operation in 2012.

Operations at the mine were suspended for three years and were restarted in April 2021.

In 2014, an underground gas explosion at the Xingyun Colliery in Heilongjiang Province, China, killed ten mine workers.