MAC: Mines and Communities

Eight Die in Central Colombia Mine Blast

Published by MAC on 2007-02-07

Eight Die in Central Colombia Mine Blast

By Michael F. Haverluck

7th February 2007 -- BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) -- Eight coal miners were killed Tuesday in an underground explosion just 110 miles north of Bogota. Three days earlier, a northeast mining explosion claimed the lives of 32.

Despite rescue attempts at the mine in the town of Gameza, all nine workers trapped in the mine were killed.

Seven men and one woman were reported to be the victims of the latest Colombia mine explosion, according to a Boyaca state police spokeswoman.

Rescue officials stopped one miner from entering the mine to rescue his fellow workers, stating that it was too dangerous. Three days before the central Colombia explosion, 32 miners lost their lives as methane gas ignited in a mine in the nation's northeast.

Erosion and landslides have been the causes of previous mining fatalities in Colombia, which registers coal as its second largest legal export behind oil.

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