22 Chinese coal miners trapped in accidents

Updated: 2012-09-25 01:30

(Jin Haixing)

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22 Chinese coal miners trapped in accidents

Rescuers accompany relief materials down a coal mine where six miners were trapped underground in a flooding accident in Jidong county, Heilongjiang province, on Sunday. XIAO JINBIAO / FOR CHINA DAILY 

Efforts to rescue a total of 22 miners, who were trapped following three separate accidents in different parts of China, continued on Monday.

Eleven people were trapped after a fire at Longshan Coal Mine in Shuangyashan, Heilongjiang province, on Saturday morning. Residents reported the accident to authorities on Sunday.

An initial investigation showed that 13 people were working underground at the time. Two were lifted to safety, according to a spokesman at the rescue team’s headquarters.

A team reached the coal mine to oversee the work, led by Wang Shuhe, deputy director of the State Administration of Work Safety, on Sunday.

The county’s coal management authorities had ordered the mine to suspend production on Sept 3, a day after its license expired, Xinhua News Agency reported.

Illegal production is being blamed for the accident, authorities said.

Rescuers extinguished the underground fire on Sunday night. The temperature of the underground area of the mine had been lowered and wind flow in the site was stable as of Monday afternoon.

Rescuers were still working to find the 11 missing miners.

Vice-governor of Heilongjiang Zhang Jianxing said late on Sunday that the operation of small mines in the province will be suspended for two months for inspection and similar problems will be rectified.

On Sunday, the Shuangya-shan government said it will examine potential safety hazards in all mines in the city, and the operation of ones near the Longshan mine will be halted immediately.

Saturday saw flooding at a coal mine in Jidong county, also in Heilongjiang, which trapped six miners.

Another five miners were trapped when a ceiling collapsed at a mine in Zibo, Shandong province, on Sunday.

The accident occurred at about 9:50 am at Dongtai Mining Co. A rescue team involving several departments was set up to find the miners.

As of Monday morning, no miners had been found and rescuers were still making efforts to search, said Wang Hong, an official at Zibo’s coal industry administration bureau.

Meanwhile, a gas explosion injured 13 miners at a coal mine in Anshun, Guizhou province, on Sunday night.

Within a month, two serious coal mine accidents have led to the deaths of more than 60 people.

A coal mine in Panzhihua, Sichuan province, was struck by a gas blast on Aug 29, trapping about one-third of the 154 miners who were working underground at the time. Forty-eight people died.

According to a report by the Supreme People’s Procuratorate on Monday, four safety management officials were detained in the wake of the accident.

Another accident at Gaokeng Coal Mine in Pingxiang, Jiangxi province, killed 15 miners on Sept 2.

According to the work safety administration, 41 accidents triggered by gas blasts have happened in China’s coal mines as of July this year, causing 149 deaths.

Compared with the same period last year, 36 fewer accidents occurred and 142 fewer miners were killed.

Zhao Ruixue in Jinan and Zhou Huiying in Harbin contributed to this story.