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2 killed, 5 missing after coal mine blast

06-03-2011 16:27 BJT

CHANGSHA - Two people were killed and five others are still missing following a gas outburst in a coal mine in South China's Hunan province, local authorities said on Friday.

The accident happened at the Shuangqiao Coal Mine in Shuangfeng county at 2:20 am Friday, when 28 miners were working underground. Twenty-one of them managed to escape or were rescued.

According to Zhou Gezhong, the chief engineer of the Hunan Provincial Administrative Bureau of Coal Mine Safety, bodies of two victims have already been found and rescuers are still searching for five missing miners.

"Two rescue teams have conducted blanket searches in the shaft, " he said.

"We have made new plans and will go all-out to search for the missing," he said.

Mining safety has long been a problem for China, but the government is taking measures to tackle the issue.

According to official statistics, 1,403 coal mine accidents were recorded in China last year, down 13.2 percent from the previous year. These accidents claimed 2,433 lives last year, down 7.5 percent year-on-year.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: China Daily

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