Rescuers recovered the body of another dead miner early on
Monday morning, bringing the death toll from the colliery gas blast
in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province to 22, local government
The accident took place at 1:50 PM on Saturday at the Yuanhua
Coal Mine in Jixi City, when 40 miners were working in the shaft.
Twenty-two miners were killed, nine escaped unhurt and four others
were injured. The four miners that were hospitalized are all out of
danger, the sources said.
More than 80 rescuers are continuing to search for the five
miners who are still missing.
A production foreman said there were five work zones at the
mine. One was under construction and miners were digging for coal
at the other four.
A power cut around 10 AM Saturday at one work site led to a
breakdown of the ventilation system and the gradual accumulation of
a large amount of gas.
When the electricity came on again at 1:00 PM, Guan Youguo, who
was in charge of ventilation in the shaft, told colleagues to
release the accumulated gas. An explosion occurred shortly after
Guan's fate in the gas explosion is unknown.
Built in 1996, the Yuanhua Coal Mine, a private coal production
venture, is listed in the category of high gas volume mines. Its
annual production capacity is 60,000 tons and it has 130 people on
At the end of August, the coal mine was forced by the local
government to stop production due to outdated certificates on work
safety. But the coal mine owners ignored the order and continued
Jixi, about six hours' bus ride from Harbin, the provincial
capital, is an important coal production base in northeast
(Xinhua News Agency November 27, 2006)