Romanian rescue teams are working to free nine people trapped by a flash flood in a huge bat cave in western Romania.

A spokeswoman for the local emergency services, Alina Marescu, told The Associated Press that two of the nine stranded in the cave by the flood that came after torrential rain on Monday afternoon were experienced speleologists, or those who study caves.

She said there was room for people to take shelter in the Huda lui Papara cave, a massive cave which is home to the largest bat colony in Europe, located in the Apuseni Mountains in the northwest Transylvania region.

She said specialized teams from three counties were trying to rescue those trapped. She said water levels were falling.