Bodies of 16 coal miners recovered in east China

Other News Materials 15 October 2007 13:01

( RIA Novosti ) - Rescuers have recovered the bodies of 16 miners killed in a coal mine explosion in east China's Jiangxi province, China's Xinhua news agency said Monday.

The accident occurred at the Jianxin coal mine on Saturday night while 283 miners were working underground. Most of the miners managed to escape, but a gas explosion in the mine caused a coal slide along a 30-meter-long tunnel and left some workers trapped.

By Monday morning, a total of 22 meters of the tunnel had been cleared of debris, but the search is continuing for any missing miners.

Xinhua reported that China's safety watchdog has ordered national coal mines to stop production and carry out inspections, aimed at improving safety and reducing the number of fatal accidents.

China has a poor industrial safety record, especially at its coal mines, which rank among the most dangerous in the world. About 4,700 people were killed in 2006 following floods, explosions and fires in Chinese mines.