Coal mine accidents claimed 86 lives during the first half of this year in east China's Jiangxi Province despite intensified production security measures, according to the supervision bureau in the province.
The Jiangxi Coal Mine Security Production Supervision Bureau has completed a comprehensive inspection of the province's 868 mines and found 728 of them have problems with production security, said He Aimin, deputy chief of the bureau.
The bureau has ordered those which did not meet the safety requirement to halt production until they have made improvements in line with the province's relevant regulation, He said.
The east province of Jiangxi, boasting a large coal yield every year, has been troubled in the past few years by coal mine accidents such as blasts, floods and collapses that usually cause lots of casualties.
Lack of efficient management and facilities account for the rise of accidents, said He. In the past two years, strong measures have been taken to strengthen production security and some 2,700 unqualified small coal mines as well as stone pits have shut down and hundreds of officials had been punished for dereliction of duty.
Analysts said that safe and smooth operation of coal mines is crucial to the energy industry since lots of major power plants in the east are short of coal.
To ease the severe power shortage in the country, China has accelerated its pace in grid construction and made all power enterprises generate electricity at full speed.
According to a recent executive meeting of the State Council, ensuring safety and security of energy production is one of several essential measures taken by the government to ease energy shortage in the summer.
(Xinhua News Agency July 27, 2004)