Indonesia coal mine blast toll rises to 28

June 17th, 2009 - 2:25 pm ICT by IANS  

Jakarta, June 17 (DPA) The toll in a coalmine explosion in Indonesia has risen to 28 Wednesday, with 12 miners still trapped and feared dead, officials said.
Rescuers pulled more bodies from the West Sumatra mine, which collapsed after an explosion of methane gas Tuesday, said Adri Chandra of the provincial crisis centre.

Chandra said nine people were injured, most with serious burns. Eight victims were treated at a local hospital in Sawahlunto while another one was sent to the provincial capital of Padang, due to his serious condition.

Rustam Pakaya, head of the health ministry’s crisis centre in Jakarta, said 12 miners were still trapped in a 150-metre shaft and feared dead.

A methane explosion collapsed the mine operated by a private coal company PT Dasrat Sarana Tuesday, sent flames up to 50 metres in the air and left a huge crater on the surface.

Indonesia has some of the world’s largest coal deposits and the country is a major coal exporter. Sawahlunto is a coal mining hub and tourism destination.

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