Archive for the ‘mines’ Category

China Concerned for Mine Safety

February 18, 2008

BEIJING – China‘s work safety agency warned Monday that a new wave of accidents could be triggered as coal mines shut by the wintry weather resume operations.

The State Administration of Work Safety warned on its Web site that the buildup of deadly gases, flooding and unstable power supply at the mines could all cause problems.

Nearly 1,800 mines in the southern provinces of Jiangxi, Hunan, Guizhou and Yunnan — all hit hard by freak snowstorms — have accumulated gases because they were forced to shut down because of power cuts, it said. Another 600 mines have been flooded.

Read the rest:

China’s Mines Killed More Than 3,700 Last Year: Corruption a Problem

By Edward Cody
Washington Post Foreign Service
Monday, February 18, 2008; Page A10

LINFEN, China — Mining has resumed in the frigid shafts, and long lines of 18-wheelers laden with coal once again clog the twisty mountain roads leading out of Linfen. This grime-covered city, where the packed snow long ago turned black and carbon-colored dust hangs in the air, has reclaimed its role as the capital of coal.

A gas explosion in December threatened Linfen’s boom ways. The accident, at a suburban mine, killed 105 workers and led authorities to halt this region’s production of the coal so badly needed to fuel China‘s roaring economy. The businesses in Linfen, in Shanxi province 400 miles southwest of Beijing, were hit hard. “They wouldn’t let anybody work,” complained Liu Wancong, who runs a small grocery in the city center.

The toll from the explosion ranked as the year’s second-worst. The government reported 3,786 miners killed in 2007, a 20 percent drop from 2006 but still making the country’s mines the most dangerous in the world.

Read the rest:


China closes 11,000 mines in safety crackdown

January 13, 2008

BEIJING, China (AP) — China has closed more than 11,000 small coal mines as part of a two-year-old safety crackdown aimed at stemming the industry’s high death toll, the government reported Sunday.

Chinese mining claimed 3,786 lives in 2007, an improvement on 2006 but still the worst record globally.

The total of 11,155 represents 45 percent of all small mines slated for closure, according to a report on the central government’s official Web site.

Reasons cited for closure include failure to obtain proper permits or safety equipment, causing undue damage to the environment, and exclusion from government economic plans.

Read the rest:

China’s coal mines kill 3,786 in 2007

The Misery of China’s Mines

August 24, 2007

By Edward Cody
Washington Post Foreign Service
Friday, August 24, 2007; Page A01

XINTAI, China, Aug. 23 — The first sign of trouble was a stream of water that burst from a wall deep in the mine, Wang Kuitao recalled. Within minutes, he said, the water was everywhere, rushing down the shaft carrying tons of mud. Another disaster was on the way, Wang quickly concluded, one more in the cruel rhythm of China‘s deadly coal fields.

“I said to myself, ‘Something terrible has happened,’ ” Wang recounted later to a group of Chinese reporters.

Read the rest:

172 Miners Perish in China; Families Told Nothing

August 20, 2007

By Edward Cody
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, August 20, 2007

BEIJING, Aug. 20 — Hopes dwindled fast Monday for the lives of 172 miners blocked deep underground more than three days ago by floodwaters that filled a coal shaft in eastern China.

Officials estimated 12 million cubic meters of water flowed into the Zhangzhuang Mine, in Shandong province 300 miles southeast of Beijing, after hard rains caused the Chaiwen River to burst through an earthen levee Friday afternoon. Although they have repaired the levee and brought in eight pumps to suck out the mud and water, engineers said emptying the flooded shaft would take a number of days.

The accident, the latest in a long series of tragedies in Chinese mines, provided another dramatic example of China’s poor worker safety record, particularly in the booming coal industry. More than 2,800 miners were killed in underground explosions and floodings last year, making China’s mines the deadliest in the world. The highest known toll came from a gas explosion in a mine shaft in 2005 that killed 214 workers.

Read it all: