Death toll rises to 19 in central China mine blast

April 2, 2010 12:09 pm 

YICHUAN, Henan, April 2 — The death toll in a central China mine blast Wednesday has risen to 19, and about 24 people were believed still trapped underground, local authorities said Friday.

About 90 miners were working underground when a gas explosion occurred at 7:20 p.m. in a coal pit privately owned by Guomin Mining Co., Ltd., in Yichuan County, Luoyang City in Henan Province, a spokesman with the rescue headquarters said.

At least 51 miners survived the explosion. Of them, 31 were saved by rescuers and 20 others escaped by themselves.

Initial investigation showed that the blast killed 15 miners underground and four on the surface. Another two on the surface were injured. Twenty four people were still trapped underground, the spokesman said.

Rescue works are underway, he said. (PNA/Xinhua)

DCT/utb

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