Dozens trapped in flooded coal mine

Dozens trapped in flooded coal mine … tion=world

More than 100 workers were trapped when a vast coal mine being built in northern China flooded on Sunday, in the latest accident to hit the country’s notoriously dangerous mining industry.

Underground water gushed into the Wangjialing mine in Shanxi province, where 261 people were working, and just 138 managed to escape, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

China’s coal mines are among the most dangerous in the world, with safety standards often ignored in the quest for profits and the drive to meet surging demand for coal - the source of about 70 per cent of China’s energy.

Xinhua earlier reported that 152 people were trapped but officials revised the number down. The exact number of people trapped was still being checked.

Fatalities at China’s coal mines peaked in 2002 when 6,995 deaths were recorded.