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(STANLEY, N.C.) — Crews in North Carolina are searching for the bodies of two young children who became trapped about 20 feet underground when a construction site in Stanley collapsed.

The incident happened around 6 p.m. Sunday, when officials received a 911 call requesting assistance.

“The caller reported that two children of unknown ages had become trapped underneath dirt at a residential construction site,” Lincoln County Emergency Management said in a statement.

The caller was later identified as the father of one of the two victims, a 7-year-old boy and a 6-year-old girl.

Multiple fire departments worked frantically through the night trying to rescue the two kids but to no avail.

“They have not had any contact with the children at all,” Dion Burleson, a spokesman for Lincoln County Emergency Management, said.

The search has since turned into a recovery effort.

“Due to the location of the incident, which is below ground, the initial rescue efforts were unsuccessful in reaching the trapped children.  A structural engineer is on site to assist with this operation, that has now moved into the recovery phase,” Lincoln County Emergency Management said in a statement.

An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the collapse.

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