Rescuers Fight Gases to Reach Trapped Miners in China

Business Week updates us on rescue efforts at a mine in Henan:

Rescuers in central China are battling flammable gases to reach 11 coal miners trapped in a shaft for three days in the region’s deadliest mining disaster since June.

The location of the workers at Pingyu mine in Henan province has been confirmed and rescuers may be able to reach them by Oct. 20, China National Radio reported, citing people that it didn’t identify. At least 26 workers were killed after a gas blast in the mine Oct. 16, the state broadcaster said today.

And from the Christian Science Monitor:

Rescuers are stepping up frantic efforts to save 11 miners still believed to be trapped by a gas explosion on Saturday. But even as relatives and friends kept a vigil, hopes were fading.

Five more bodies were found Sunday, bringing the death toll to 26, and Du Bo, deputy chief of the rescue headquarters, made no efforts to sugarcoat the situation.

“Based on past experience, the remaining 11 miners could be buried in coal dust, so the survival chances are frail,” Mr. Du told the state-run Xinhua News Agency.

The tragedy in China is just one of dozens of fatal mining accidents in the country each year. But this one is garnering the world’s attention in the wake of the Chilean saga, because it provides such a stark contrast in the way the two countries handle mining safety issues.

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