June 16, 2009

5 dead, 30 feared trapped in Indonesia mine explosion

A mine collapse -- triggered by a methane explosion -- killed at least five people and injured nine Tuesday on the island of Sumatra in Indonesia, officials said.

At least 30 others were feared missing.

The nine injured had been hospitalized, according to Rustam Pakaya, head of crisis management for the ministry of health. Their conditions were not immediately available.

"We received reports of the collapsed mine around midday Tuesday, local time. Thirty people are feared still in the mine when it collapsed, while the other nine have been pulled out," said Yanuar of the Padang search and rescue team, who uses one name, as many people do in Indonesia.

Rescuers from the nearby cities of Sawahlunto and Solok had been dispatched and were racing to save the miners, he added.

The Sawahlunto area is known for its rich coal and has been mined since 1875.


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