- An explosion inside a coal mine in northern Turkey killed at least 25 people
- Rescuers working through night were trying to bring dozens of others trapped to surface
- Explosion occurred at around 6:45 pm at the state-owned TTK Amasra Muessese Mudurlugu mine
Turkish coal mine blast: The death toll from a coal mine explosion in northern Turkey rose to at least 28 people and rescue efforts continued as a fire burned in the mine, officials said Saturday (October 15).
Energy Minister Fatih Durmaz said rescue efforts continued for 15 people with a majority of them in the mine’s gallery where a fire still burned.
“It’s not a huge fire, but to get there safely, the fire and carbon monoxide gas must be eliminated,” he told journalists at the site.
Four or five other miners were trapped in cave-ins, Durmaz added. The minister earlier said that preliminary assessments indicated that the explosion was likely caused by firedamp, which is a reference to flammable gases found in coal mines.
Health Minister Fahrettin Koca tweeted that 28 miners were dead and 11 rescued miners were hospitalized in Bartin and Istanbul. Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said 58 people had been rescued alive.
Ambulances were on standby at the site. Rescue teams were dispatched to the area, including from neighboring provinces, Turkey’s disaster management agency, AFAD, said.
Turkey’s president was expected to visit Amasra on Saturday.
In Turkey’s worst mine disaster, a total of 301 people died in 2014 in a fire inside a coal mine in the town of Soma, in western Turkey.