At least 8 dead in Russian coal mine blast

At least 8 dead in Russian coal mine blast
# 09 May 2010 04:06 (UTC +04:00)
Baku – APA. A methane blast at a big Siberian coal mine killed at least eight people, emergency officials said on Sunday, and Russian news agencies said efforts to rescue survivors were hindered by a second blast hours later, APA reports quoting “Reuters”.
Another 24 workers were injured in the first blast on Saturday at the Raspadskaya mine in the Kemerovo region in Russia’s coal-rich Kuzbass late on Saturday, Valery Korchagin, a regional emergency official, said by telephone.
He said 64 workers were still underground hours after the explosion, which came just before midnight (1 p.m. EDT).
Russian news agencies cited unnamed emergency officials and sources at the company that owns the mine, also called Raspadskaya, as saying there was a second blast a few hours after the first.
Itar-Tass quoted a company source as saying that rescue operations had been suspended due to thick smoke following the second blast and that contact with three rescue teams -- a total of 20 people -- had been lost and their fates were unknown.
The source said 74 people remained underground -- 54 miners and 20 rescuers.
Korchagin said 12 of the injured were hospitalized. They were among more than 200 who emerged alive after the blast on Saturday.
The deadly mine drama marred weekend celebrations of the 65th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War Two, whose centerpiece will be a military parade in Moscow’s Red Square on Sunday with Russian and foreign leaders looking on.
The mine in the city of Mezhdurechensk had reserves of some 450 million tons of coal and produced 8.9 million tons in 2007, according to the Raspadskaya company. It says the pit is the largest underground mine in Russia.
Raspadskaya, Russia’s largest standalone coking coal producer, is part-owned by steel and mining firm Evraz Group.
Rossiya-24 said another blast three months ago killed one worker at the mine, located in the coal-rich area of central Siberia known as the Kuzbass.
President Dmitry Medvedev ordered Emergencies Minister Sergei Shoigu to ensure everything possible was done to rescue the miners, and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin spoke with Kemerovo region governor Aman Tuleyev, Russian media reported.
Mine blasts and other industrial accidents have prompted repeated calls from Russia’s leaders for improvements to creaking infrastructure and stricter adherence to safety rules. Kremlin critics say little has been done.
1 2 3 4 5 İDMAN XƏBƏR