Part of the rescue operations Image Credit: Civil Defence and Ambulance - Sultanate of Oman

Muscat: Six Indian labourers who died in Oman during heavy rains when they were buried alive at an excavation site for a water pipeline project, were identified as Indian nationals emergency services said Tuesday.

Workers were buried alive after heavy rain flooded the construction site they were working at.

Officials at the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance (PACDA) revealed that although rescue teams had managed to reach them, the workers were unfortunately found dead.

The six were working on a section of a pipe that was 14 metres below the ground at a piping project in Seeb, when they were trapped under mud and water.

The construction workers were identified today to be Indian nationals.

"Rescue teams recovered the bodies of six Asian workers that were buried in a water project" in the coastal city of Seeb, about 30 kilometres northwest of the capital Muscat, the Public Authority for Civil Defense and Ambulance (PACDA) said.

Adding "The workers were trapped in rain water and mud while laying down pipes... underground in a site that was 295 metres long and 14 metres deep."

It took rescue workers about 12 hours to recover the bodies after pumping the water out, the authority said.

Indian Embassy in a tweet said “We are deeply saddened to learn about the incident involving death of six workers, who are believed to be Indian nationals, in Seeb area of Muscat, Oman, following the heavy rains on November 10,” 

Adding “The Embassy is in close contact with the Omani authorities to ascertain the full facts of the incident and confirm the identity of the victims. We express our heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and stand ready to extend all possible support.”

PACDA urged companies in charge of construction projects to abide by safety regulations to protect workers.

The General Federation of Oman Trade Unions called for an investigation to "clarify the circumstances behind the incident and for the necessary legal procedures" to follow.