China mine ac­ci­dent toll rises to 21

The Phnom Penh Post - - WORLD -

THE death toll in a coal mine roof col­lapse in north­ern China has risen to 21 after res­cuers found two more min­ers dead on Sun­day, state me­dia re­ported.

A to­tal of 87 peo­ple were work­ing un­der­ground in the Shaanxi prov­ince mine at the time of the ac­ci­dent on Satur­day af­ter­noon, ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cial news agency Xin­hua, cit­ing lo­cal au­thor­i­ties.

Res­cuers had been search­ing for two re­main­ing trapped min­ers but found them dead on Sun­day morn­ing, Xin­hua re­ported. An­other 66 min­ers were safely evac­u­ated from the mine.

The cause of the ac­ci­dent at the site, run by pri­vately owned Baiji Min­ing, is still un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Pri­vate coal mines in China typ­i­cally take fewer safety pre­cau­tions than larger state-owned mines.

In­for­ma­tion about the ac­ci­dent can­not be dis­closed, said a driver at the com­pany, who an­swered Baiji’s reg­is­tered phone num­ber.

The mine is a small scale op­er­a­tion, he said, de­clin­ing to give his name.

Ac­cord­ing to China’s Na­tional Coal Mine Safety Ad­min­is­tra­tion, the coun­try saw 375 coal min­ing re­lated deaths in 2017, down 28.7 per cent year-on-year.

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