Death toll from NE. China mine explosion hits 108
HEGANG, Heilongjiang: Rescuers on Friday found the corpse of the last miner missing in the coal mine blast in northeast China, bringing the death toll to 108, the investigation authority said.
The body was recovered at about 4 p.m. Friday in the debris of a shaft at the Xinxing Coal Mine in Hegang City, Heilongjiang Province, said Zhang Jinguan, spokesman of the investigation team of the fatal accident.
The searching efforts had come to an end and workers were clearing up the mine shaft, said Zhang.
The blast ripped through the mine under the state-owned Heilongjiang Longmei Mining Holding Group's subsidiary in Hegang Saturday afternoon. A total of 528 miners were working underground when the blast happened, and 420 escaped from the scene.
Safety officials and investigators have blamed poor management and inadequate safety precautions for the coal mine blast.
By Thursday, relatives of 59 miners killed in the blast had signed compensation agreements with the mining company.
According to the compensation scheme, each family of the dead miner could get 102,600 yuan ($15,024) in allowances plus a compensation package of either a one-off 200,000 yuan payment, or a long-term scheme of 708 yuan a month for the spouse and 531 yuan a month for parents and children.