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Hunan coal mine mishap kills 18
By Guan Xiaofeng (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-12-15 10:49

At least 18 miners were killed in a tunnel 500 metres underground after a fire on Monday in a Hunan Province coal mine. At about 5 pm yesterday, rescuers found the remains of the 13 trapped miners.

A miner is rescued and lifted out of the coal mine shaft in Xiangtan, Hunan Province December 14, 2004. [newsphoto]

A nurse tends one of the workers rescued from a coal mine that was hit by a fire in Xiangtan, Hunan Province December 14, 2004. The fire mishap killed 18 miners. [newsphoto]

In a separate incident, 36 miners were still trapped yesterday after a mine flooded on Sunday in Southwest China's Guizhou Province.

Also, a gas explosion left six people dead and two missing in a coal mine in Chongqing Municipality yesterday afternoon.

In Central China's Hunan, 21 miners were below ground when the fire broke out at about 6:30 pm in the Xinli Coal Mine in Tanjiashan Town of Xiangtan County. Three of the miners were rescued.

The fire was caused by a short circuit 480 metres underground.

Five rescue teams from nearby areas were sent to help.

Rescuers first plugged the mouth of the mine and put out the fire at about 7 am yesterday.

At about 5 pm yesterday, rescuers found the remains of the 13 miners trapped 500 metres down in the mine.

In Sinan County under the city of Tongren of Guizhou, rescue efforts are ongoing. Rescuers are using two giant pumps to bail the water out of the Xujiaba Coal Mine.

In Chongqing's Yongchuan, the explosion occurred at around 3 pm in Shimamen Colliery. Sixteen workers were rescued, but two others remain missing after six people died.

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