-Gas explosion traps 30 miners under debris in Balochistan’s Marwar area
QUETTA: At least 18 miners died and several were injured after a coal mine collapsed in the Marwar area of Balochistan on Saturday.
Chief Inspector of Mines Iftikhar Ahmed confirmed that thirty miners were working in three shops located in Pir Ismail area of Marwar which is some 45 km away from Quetta. All the miners were trapped when a gas explosion led to the mine’s collapse, he added.
Rescue teams, including Personnel of Frontier Corps, Levies and Quick Response Force, were immediately called on the site. The trapped miners were rescued in an unconscious state and shifted to the local hospitals.
The chief inspector told media that nine injured miners were admitted to Quetta’s Civil Hospital. 18 of the injured miners succumbed to their injuries.
Rescue officials, who initially said only two persons were killed, had rightly warned that the death toll could rise. A majority of the injured and dead miners are said to belong to the same village in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Shangla district.
Deputy Commissioner Quetta Dr Farrukh Atique, mines inspector and other officials from the provincial disaster management authority reached the site of the incident and supervised rescue efforts.
Separately, nine workers were reportedly trapped in another mine due to gas suffocation at a mine of Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation in Quetta, rescue sources said. They added that two bodies were recovered and as many injured labourers evacuated. Rescue efforts were said to be underway.
Reports say several miners had also been reported missing. A local leader informed media that the bodies of three miners were recovered during the rescue operation. However, the reports could not be verified independently.
Around 100 to 200 miners die on average in coal mine accidents every year, according to Pakistan Central Mines Labour Federation. At least 11 miners died during two similar incidents in mines of Darra Adam Khel and Jhelum during April.
Earlier on Saturday, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Saqib Nisar took suo motu notice of the killing of six labourers in Kharan district of Balochistan on Friday. Supreme Court (SC) issued notices to Balochistan chief secretary and Inspector General of Police (IGP) and will hear the case at Quetta Registry on May 11. The families of six slain labourers received the bodies in Okara.