Rescuers have recovered six bodies from a sinkhole that occurred when a coal mine tailings area suddenly caved in on Thursday in northeast China's Liaoning Province, sources with the local government said Sunday.
The accident occurred at 10:40 AM Thursday near Shajingou Village, Huludao City in southwestern Liaoning, when about a dozen local residents were picking coal remnants to heat their homes.
The aboveground tailings area suddenly caved in, and five women and a man were buried in the hole measuring seven meters deep and seven meters in diameter.
More than ten machines were brought into try and dig out the victims. Rescuers worked for 60 hours.
Zhang Li, an official with the provincial land and resource department said the sinkhole may have been caused by a nearby mine. Others said there is an underground cave near where the accident happened.
The investigation into the cause of the accident continues.
(Xinhua News Agency March 19, 2007)