At least 7 feared dead in gold mine collapse in Tanzania
Posted: 2017-Feb-16 16.00.01 UTC+0800
DAR ES SALAAM — At least seven miners were feared dead after they were trapped in a gold mine following the collapse of Buhemba gold mine on Monday in Tanzania's northern region of Mara, authorities said Wednesday.
Reports on Tuesday said at least five miners were trapped and 13 others rescued after a gold mine belonging to State Mining Corporation (STAMICO) collapsed in the region.
Annarose Nyamubi, Butiama District Commissioner, said rescuers managed to dig out two bodies of the miners on Tuesday, adding: "We fear that five more miners are still trapped underground."
"It would be difficult to dig out more bodies as the pit is full of water and pieces of rocks inside," said Nyamubi.
She said the exact number of miners killed in the accident might be known at the end of the rescue mission which was using poor rescue gear.
Nyamubi said information received from 13 miners rescued on Tuesday indicated that there were seven more miners still trapped underground.
On Tuesday, Mara Regional Commissioner, Charles Mlingwa, said four of the 13 rescued miners were in critical conditions.
Mlingwa said a team of rescuers were working round the clock to save the lives of the trapped miners.vHe told a news conference that authorities were not sure whether the trapped miners were still alive.
Mlingwa said information from the rescued miners had it that five of the miners still trapped underground were difficult to reach because their entrances had been blocked by huge rocks that fell when the mine collapsed.
"The mining pit is full of water," said Mlingwa, adding that the government has suspended mining activities in the area.
A fortnight ago, 15 miners who were trapped in a mine pit at Nyarugusu in Geita region were rescued after four days. (PNA)