Blast traps Chinese miners

ONE miner has died and 18 others remain trapped in an underground coal mine in China's northeast Heilongjiang province, while in a separate incident 45 workers have been rescued from a flooded coal mine in China's Shanxi Province.

Angie Tomlinson

A coal mine blast early Saturday evening in the Shunfa Coal Mine has left workers trapped with rescue efforts ongoing at time of print.

According to official news agency Xinhua, investigations showed the mine's operators, whose license had been suspended, had illegally resumed production before the accident occurred.

A build up on gas and dust in the shaft is being blamed for the accident.

In an incident on Wednesday in the country's coal-rich Shanxi Province, 45 people were trapped when the mine was inundated by water.

Xinhua reported 43 workers escaped soon after the flood, but two workers were trapped for more than 30 hours before rescuers reached them.

Rescuers used 20 pumps to drain 2000 cubic meters of water from the shaft, Xinhua said.