12 dead, 32 trapped in latest China mine disaster

12 dead, 32 trapped in latest China mine disaster Beijing: A gas explosion at a mine in central China killed 12 workers and trapped 32 underground, state media said on Thursday, the second major mine disaster in the country this week.

Fifty miners were able to escape after yesterday evening blast, which was caused by an underground gas leak, the Xinhua News Agency said, citing in Henan province's governor, Guo Gengmao. It's possible the trapped miners survived the explosion, he was cited as saying.

About 100 rescue workers were trying to reached the trapped workers at the privately owned Guomin Mining Co. coal pit in Yichuan County of Luoyang City, Xinhua said. The mine had been under renovation.

Mine boss Wang Guozheng has disappeared and authorities ordered his assets frozen in the wake of the accident, Xinhua said. Yichuan County Chief Wu Ligang and three other county officials were fired.

News of the explosion came as rescue work continued at a mine in northern China's Shanxi province, four days after 153 workers were trapped underground when water flooded the shaft where they were working.

The flood at the Wangjialing mine started when workers digging tunnels broke through into an old shaft filled with water, a government safety body said, accusing mine officials of ignoring safety rules and danger warnings in a rush to open the mine.