MOSCOW, January 22 (RIA Novosti) – Rescuers have pumped over 7,000 cu m (some 1.8 million gallons) of water in a coalmine in southwestern Siberia’s Kemerovo Region following an accident on Sunday that killed four and left four more miners missing.
A spokesman for the local Emergencies Ministry’s department said the water is needed to drain out the accumulated gases. It is pumped in the mine except for the area where four missing miners could be trapped.
“We have injected 7,300 cu m of water, while we need a total of 7,600 cu m,” the spokesman said adding that after the whole volume of water was injected in the mine, rescuers would resume the search for miners.
A total of 77 miners were working underground at mine No. 7 in the Prokopyevsky district when smoke started spreading through the tunnels at around 02.15 a.m. Moscow time [22:15 GMT on Saturday]. Sixty-nine people have been successfully evacuated.
The criminal probe has been launched on the charges of the violation of safety rules during mining works, which has caused the deaths of two and more persons due to negligence. Persons guilty of the breach of safety rules may face a prison term of up to seven years under Russia’s Criminal Code.