Explosions in Turkiya kill and injure many Featured

 An explosion inside a coal mine in northern Turkey killed at least 40 people, Turkish officials said, while rescuers were trying to bring dozens of others trapped inside the mine to the surface.

The blast occurred on Friday at the state-owned TTK Amasra Muessese Mudurlugu mine in the town of Amasra, in the Black Sea coastal province of Bartin.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, who travelled to Amasra to coordinate the rescue operation, said on Saturday that 40 miners were confirmed dead.

Eleven were injured and hospitalised, while 58 others managed to get out of the mine on their own or were rescued unharmed. The status of one remaining miner was unclear.

Energy Minister Fatih Donmez, who also went to Amasra after the blast, said a preliminary assessment indicated the explosion was likely caused by firedamp – a reference to flammable gases found in coal mines.

Several rescue teams were dispatched to the area, including from neighbouring provinces, Turkey’s disaster management agency, AFAD, said.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he would cancel all his other arrangements and fly to the scene of the accident on Saturday.

“Our hope is that the loss of life will not increase further, that our miners will be found alive,” Erdogan said in a tweet.

“All of our efforts are aimed in this direction.”

The explosion occurred 300 meters (985 feet) below the entrance of the mine at around 15:15 GMT, the Bartin governor’s office said.

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Television images showed hundreds of people, some with tears in their eyes, congregating around a damaged white building near the entrance to the pit.

Earlier, Turkey’s Maden-Is mining workers’ union attributed the blast to a build-up of methane gas, but other officials said it was premature to draw conclusions about the cause of the accident.

In Turkey’s worst mine disaster, a total of 301 people died in 2014 in a fire inside a coalmine in the town of Soma, western Turkey./ Aljazeera 

Last modified on Saturday, 15 October 2022 11:17