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11 dead in Colombia coal mine blast

By Haris Afzal on Thursday, January 27, 2011 with 0 comments


 SARDINATA: Eleven miners were killed and 10 were missing and feared dead Wednesday after an explosion ripped through a coal mine in northeastern Colombia, local officials told media.

Six bodies, wrapped in white plastic bags, were removed from the mine at around 6:00 pm (2300) GMT by search teams, a reporter at La Preciosa mine witnessed.

Earlier, officials said the bodies of four other miners had been recovered and a fifth man died of his injuries after being taken to a local hospital. At least six miners were hospitalized with injuries, officials said.

Officials with the Colombian Institute of Geology and Mines (INGEOMINAS), which sent rescue teams to the scene, held out little hope that the remaining miners were still alive.

"Because of the scope of the disaster, it is impossible that they survived," a spokesman for the institute, which supervises Colombia's mines, told media.

The blast may have been caused by an accumulation of methane gas, said Yamil Rangel, the mayor of Sardinata.

The mine is located about an hour outside Sardinata in the Norte de Santander province, which borders Venezuela.

Category: World News

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