Gas blast kills eight miners in China [ed., increased to 13 dead]

A gas explosion has ripped through a coal mine in southwest China killing eight people and leaving five missing, in the latest accident to hit the country’s mining industry.

The blast at the Fufa Coal Mine in Chongqing municipality occurred yesterday afternoon when 16 miners were working underground, the local authorities said in a statement quoted by the official Xinhua news agency.

Three miners were rescued, two of whom were injured.

China’s mining industry has a notoriously poor safety record.

Eleven people were killed on Sunday in a similar explosion at a mine in northern China.

Last year 2433 people died in coal mine accidents in China, according to official statistics – a rate of more than six workers a day.

Labour rights groups say the actual death toll is likely much higher, partly due to under-reporting of accidents as mine bosses seek to limit their economic losses and avoid punishment.


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