Rescue workers in India trying to reach around three dozen workers still trapped inside a tunnel by a Himalayan river, have admitted they are struggling to reach any survivors and that time is running out.
The men have been trapped since Sunday's disaster, a glacier collapsed and the hydroelectric dam they were working on was swept away.
The death toll as of Tuesday was close to thirty and conditions are not helping rescue efforts.
Praveen Tiwari is from the National Disaster Response Force.
“There are many interlinked tunnels, so when we remove mud from one part of the tunnel, because of pressure difference, more mud comes in from other tunnels. So, the speed of work is not as fast as we would like."
The workers were among 197 people who officials said were still unaccounted for. Drones and thermal imaging equipment have also been deployed to help locate survivors.
The situation remains bleak, according to Indian power minister R.K. Singh.
"A total of 93 workers of the project (National Thermal Power Cooperation) are still missing. And we are assuming that they will not be found now and should be considered dead."
Officials have yet to conclusively determine what caused the disaster, though scientists investigating it believe heavy snowfall followed by bright sunshine may have triggered the glacier's collapse.