Six workers in Chhattisgarh coal mine untraced

Posted by on May 7th, 2010 and filed under Crime/Disaster/Accident. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Raipur, May 7 (IANS) Rescuers failed to trace six workers who have been missing since a blast Thursday in an underground coal mine in Chhattisgarh’s Koriya district, officials said Friday.

The toll in the accident rose to six Friday with two workers succumbing to injuries in a hospital. At least 30 people are battling for life at Apollo Hospital in Bilaspur town and a hospital at Koriya district.

The accident occurred when workers were trying to fix a carbon monoxide leak inside the mine. The Anjali Hill mine, over 400 km north of capital Raipur, is owned by the South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL), the largest profit-making subsidiary of the public sector Coal India Limited.

‘Rescuers did their best throughout Friday to trace the six missing workers but have not made any contact. We have now called in experts from other states to step up the rescue effort,’ sources at SECL, headquartered in Bilaspur town, told IANS.

The blast has raised questions about SECL’s coalmine safety measures as sources say that early this week a team had declared the mine ‘safe’ despite a continuous carbon monoxide leak as well as a major fire in a portion of the mine.

The blast has also caused a major revenue loss for SECL as production has been stalled and officials are not sure when it will resume.

‘It’s a major coalmine with a daily output of some 800-900 tonnes of superior grade coal. It’s difficult to comment when production will resume,’ SECL spokesperson Alok Sinha told IANS.

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