Beijing: A rock burst has ripped through a coal mine in east China’s Shandong Province, killing at least two workers and leaving 2o others trapped, officials said. The incident happened in the coal mine in Yuncheng County, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. The burst happened on Saturday night and destroyed part of a water drainage tunnel in the coal mine.
At that time of the accident, 334 people were working underground, of which 312 were later lifted to safety, Zhai Minghua, an expert with Shandong Energy Group Co. Ltd, which owns the coal mine, was quoted as saying by the report.
Ventilation in the coal mine has recovered and rescue work is under way. The two bodies were retrieved on Sunday and search for the remaining 20 trapped workers is underway, Zhai said, adding that the initial rescue operation was hampered by the falling of fractured rocks in the tunnel.
In August, 13 miners were killed in a mine explosion in southern China. Rock burst accidents are often caused by fractures in rocks due to mining. Though the number of deaths has reduced at coal mines in recent years, mining accidents are common in China, the world’s largest coal producer.