At least 50 miners are trapped underground after a cave-in at a coal mine in Sanmenxia, China. Four miners are confirmed to have died and around a dozen are believed to have managed to escape.
Rescue workers are digging a new tunnel to try to reach the trapped miners. But so far there have been no reports of any communication with the trapped men. The mine is in Sanmenxia, Henan province, and is operated by the state-owned Yima Coal Group.
It’s reported that a 2.9M earthquake struck in the region shortly before the mine collapsed, and this is seen as a likely cause of the accident. Changes to the pressure in the mine then let to a ‘rock burst’, which occurs when heavily loaded walls suddenly give way and blast rock across a large area. These blasts can themselves be lethal.