Tuesday, March 30, 2010

THE PRICE OF COAL

"Rescuers were today trying frantically to reach 123 miners trapped underground when water flooded a coalmine in northern China. Officials said 261 miners were working on construction of the Wangjialing coalmine in Shanxi province, when underground water suddenly gushed through the tunnels at about 2.30pm on Sunday afternoon. They said 138 of the men managed to escape. ....China's work safety administration said 2,631 people died in coal accidents in 2009, down by 584 from the previous year. Many accidents are blamed on poor safety methods and limited training as mining companies scramble to feed the voracious demand for coal from the country's industrial juggernaut. One of China's deadliest mine disasters in recent years occurred when a flood through coal shafts in eastern Shandong province killed 181 miners in September 2007. " (Sunday Times, 28 March) RD

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