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18 feared trapped in debris after Vorkutinskaya mine blast

February 11, 2013, 11:15 UTC+3

Four miners managed to get to the surface on their own

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MOSCOW, February 11 (Itar-Tass) – There has been an explosion in the Vorkutinskaya mine in the Republic of Komi. Deputy spokesperson for the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations (EMERCOM) Yelena Smirnykh told Itar-Tass that 18 people are feared trapped in debris.

“At 10:28 MSK an explosion occurred in the Vorkutinskaya mine in the Republic of Komi, 22 miners were there at the time,” she said she.

According to Smirnykh, four miners managed to get to the surface on their own. “According to preliminary information, 18 people may be trapped in debris,” the EMERCOM official said.

Seven squads of a militarised mine rescue unit were dispatched to the scene.

The Vorkutinskaya mine is owned by the Vorkuta-Ugol company. It was built on the basis of the Kapitalnatya mine No 1 and mine No 40. The enterprise was put into operation in 1973 with a production capacity of 1.8 million tonnes of coal per year. The mine develops the Troinoi and Chetvertnoi coal beds.

The commercial reserves of the Vorkutinskaya mine are about 40 million tonnes, which will ensure the work of the mine with the current production capacity for nearly half a century.

At the end of 2011, the Vorkutinskaya won the corporate competition “Decent working conditions - the basis for respect in the collective,” as well as was recognised the best company in the sphere of the organisation of decent work conditions.


The Monday morning explosion has not caused a fire in the Vorkutinskaya mine where 18 people are feared trapped under debris, deputy spokesperson for the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Russia (EMERCOM) Yelena Smirnova told Itar-Tass.

“According to preliminary information, there was a methane explosion that caused no fire,” she said.

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