23 trapped after Polish coal mine blast

23 trapped after Polish coal mine blast

November 22, 2006 Filed Under: Mining Services  

A gas explosion killed at least one miner and trapped 23 others underground in a coal mine in southern Poland on Tuesday, police said.

A police spokesman said the blast occurred at around 4:30 p.m. (1530 GMT) and was probably caused by methane.

“Some 23 people are there right now and there is absolutely no contact with them right now,” he said.

A spokesman of the coal mine said rescue work was in progress.

“It is hard to say exactly what is going on there right now,” Zbigniew Madej, spokesman for the state-run Polish Coal Company, told Polish All News television.

A miner in the town of Ruda, around 300 km (190 miles) southwest of the capital Warsaw, told Reuters there had been a loud explosion, probably from a shaft about 1 km below ground.

A spokesman for the Polish government said Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski was on his way to the mine to follow events.

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