Rescuers find 28 bodies in Turkish mine

The explosion on Monday buried the miners some 1,770 feet below the surface.

Updated: May 20, 2010, 12:35 PM IST

Ankara: Rescuers on Thursday found the bodies of 28 Turkish miners three days after a methane gas explosion collapsed parts of a major coal mine in northern Turkey, the energy minister said.

Taner Yildiz said rescuers were still trying to find two other miners missing in the Karadon mine, near the Black Sea port of Zonguldak.

The explosion on Monday buried the miners some 1,770 feet (540 meters) below the surface. Eleven miners were evacuated shortly after the explosion.

Some 400 mine rescue workers had been trying to reach the missing miners since then, their work hampered by collapsed rocks.

Authorities are investigating whether safety rules were violated - a common factor in past mine accidents in Turkey.

It was the third mine accident in Turkey in the past six months. In February, a methane gas explosion collapsed an underground chamber in a coal mine in northwestern Balikesir province, killing 13 workers. In December, a similar accident killed 19 miners in neighbouring Bursa province.

In Turkey`s worst mining disaster, a gas explosion killed 270 workers near Zonguldak in 1992.

Bureau Report