Wed, April 14, 2010
China > Mainland > Shanxi coal mine flood

Death toll rises to 37 in N China flooded colliery

2010-04-14 01:39:29 GMT2010-04-14 09:39:29 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

The investigation team of Wangjialing Coal Mine flood accident holds the first meeting in north China's Shanxi Province, April 13, 2010. Chinese State Council, China's cabinet, launched an investigation Tuesday morning into the Wangjialing Coal Mine flood accident. The investigation is being led by Luo Lin, chief of the State Administration of Work Safety, with deputies from the provincial government of Shanxi, State Administration of Coal Mine Safety, Ministry of Supervision and the All-China Federation of Trade Unions. (Xinhua/Yan Yan)

Luo Lin (R), chief of the State Administration of Work Safety and head of the investigation team of Wangjialing Coal Mine flood accident, speaks at their first meeting in north China's Shanxi Province, April 13, 2010. (Xinhua/Yan Yan)

XIANGNING, Shanxi, April 14 (Xinhua) -- One more body was retrieved from a coal mine that was flooded more than two weeks ago in north China's Shanxi Province, bringing the death toll to 37, rescue headquarters said Wednesday morning.

Rescuers are searching for the one who is believed still trapped underground at Wangjialing Coal Mine, which straddles Xiangning County, of Linfen City, and Hejin City, of Yuncheng City, according to the rescue headquarters.

Altogether 261 miners were working in the shaft of the coal mine, which is under construction, when the flooding happened at about 1:40 p.m. March 28, and only 108 were lifted unharmed to the surface.

A total of 115 miners were rescued alive on April 5 after being trapped for more than a week underground.

The State Council, China's cabinet, launched an investigation Tuesday morning into the fatal accident.

At the team's first plenary meeting Tuesday, Luo Lin, chief of the State Administration of Work Safety and leader of the investigation, blamed the accident on poor safety and negligence of duty, saying the accident "should, and could, have been avoided."

Luo vowed to pinpoint the exact cause of the tragedy and penalize those responsible for it.

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