At least 20 people are believed to be buried alive in a landslide in Penang, Malaysia on Saturday (21 October).

According to local reports, the incident took place at a construction site at Tanjung Bungah around 8.30am local time (4:30am BST). The side of the hill that slid down was estimated to be 10m high.

All the victims in the incident are said to be construction workers. Officials said two survivors, who were rescued were foreign workers, The Sun Daily news website reported.

The state Fire and Rescue Department is leading the rescue operation along with federal and state agencies. Penang Hospital paramedics and a Civil Defence team are on site to assist the victims.

"When we arrived at the scene at about 9.10am local time, we found that the construction site at the hill slope had been hit by a landslide," said a Fire and Rescue Department spokesman, according to the New Straits Times news website.

"We were told there were at least 15 people trapped inside," he added.

A foreign worker, who witnessed the incident, said that the landslide occured without warning.

"I was operating the crane when suddenly the earth caved in. There was hardly time to do anything," he added.

Authorities are also surveying the area to determine if evacuations are needed as there are many residents living in this area, The Sun Daily news website reported.