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Romania suffers two fatal coal mine incidents in October

06 November 2017

On October 30, an underground explosion at the Uricani coal mine in Western Romania killed one and injured three others. This is the second mine accident in Romania in a month: a gallery ceiling collapsed at the Lupeni coal mine on October 5 leaving two miners dead and one injured.

Stock image
Stock image

The Uricani miners were carrying out activities associated with the pit’s closure when the blast took place, 50 metres underground. According to Romania Journal, two of the injured were airlifted to a specialist burns hospital in Bucharest and two of the rescuers were also admitted to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation.

One local source quoted a trade union leader saying the most likely cause of the explosion was the ignition of methane in the mine. A judicial investigation into the incident will take place, according to local state prosecutors.

The Uricani mine currently employs 300 and will close by the end of the year. At its peak, some 2,200 miners used to work at the site.

The earlier incident at the Lupeni mine involved a ceiling collapse more than 400 meters underground. After 12 hours of digging, rescuers found one dead and two injured miners, with one of the latter later succumbing to his injuries in hospital.

The Lupeni coal mine is located in the Valea Jiului mining region and is owned by the state-owned energy company Complexul Energetic Hunedoara.

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