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Seven killed in China mine accident

(Xinhua)

09:23, October 17, 2012

CHANGSHA, Oct. 16 (Xinhua) -- Seven people suffocated in a poorly ventilated manganese mine in central China in the country's latest fatal mining accident, the local government reported on Tuesday.

Six miners descended, without approval, into the closed manganese mine in the city of Yongzhou, Hunan Province, early on Monday morning to maintain the shaft, according to an initial investigation report issued by the local work safety authorities.

The miners fell due to a high concentration of carbon dioxide inside the mine, but two managed to escape and reported the accident. Three miners on the ground rushed into the shaft to rescue their colleagues, only to become suffocated themselves because they did not take proper protection, the report said.

The owner of the mine has been detained by police while all mines in Yongzhou were ordered to suspend operations for a safety overhaul, the city authorities said.

The accident came after the State Council Work Safety Commission carried out a nationwide work safety inspection campaign in September to prevent major deadly accidents before the Communist Party of China convenes its 18th National Congress in November.

In August, 45 miners were killed in a coal mine explosion in the city of Panzhihua, in southwest China's Sichuan Province.
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