11 die of asphyxiation in Chinese coal mine

BEIJING (AP) — Eleven miners died of asphyxiation Saturday while doing construction work in a coal mine in northern China, authorities said. A duty officer at the State Administration of Work Safety said six people were also injured in the accident in the shaft on the outskirts of the city of Shuozhou in Shanxi province. The Xinhua News Agency said four escaped unharmed, but it only put the injured toll at two. Inspectors were on their way to the scene to determine the cause of the accident, said the officer, who like many Chinese officials would give only his surname, Zhang. He said no other information was available. No details were given about the injuries and calls to the local Suozhou work safety bureau rang unanswered. China’s mining industry remains the world’s deadliest, despite government promises to improve mining safety. Xinhua said the mine was run by Zheneng Majialiang, a division of the Datong Coal Mine Group.

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