Explosion at New Zealand Pike River Coal mine
There has been an explosion at the Pike River Coal mine in Atarau on the West Coast. Police said an electrician went into the mine about 3.50pm to investigate a power outage and discovered a loader driver who had been blown off his machine about 1500 meters into the mine shaft. The company has confirmed there could be as many as 35 people unaccounted for.CEO Peter Whittall said two men have returned to the surface and they are being interviewed to try and determine the full extent of the incident. “One of the employees has said they felt an explosion underground, and since then he's walked from the mine with another employee," Whittall said. He said communications underground were "terminated" when the incident took place.Greymouth's emergency services are treating the incident as "highly significant”. Grey District mayor Tony Kokshoorn is also heading to the mine.” It’s too early to make any calls at the moment, but it's not good news" he said.Greymouth St John said nine ambulances and two helicopters are at the scene. They said they have been preparing for a major operation with 20 medical personnel. The mine runs 2.3km into the earth and is the source of high grade coal used in steel production, most particularly for the Indian market. Shares in Pike River Coal Ltd have been placed in a trading halt. The price of the shares dropped sharply - 14% - on news of the explosion.[…]
An underground explosion ripped through a coal mine in New Zealand on Friday and according to the police and the media reports, up to 30 workers were in the mine and could be now up to 5,000 feet (1,500 meters underground). Two men have returned to the surface from a separate part of the mine after the underground explosion. Although there is a built-in escape route in the min, it is not known whether the trapped miners could access it and Greymouth mayor Tony Kokshoorn said it could take days before it is...