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1 Apr, 2007 04:46

Equipment cut-off could have caused mine blast

Equipment cut-off could have caused mine blast

As the investigation into the deadly blast at the Ulyanovskaya coal mine in Russia's Kemerovo region continues, new accounts of what caused the explosion have emerged.

The governor of the region, Aman Tuleev, believes, “the exhausted equipment at the mine was deliberately shut off”.

That caused a high concentration of methane in the mine, which then exploded.

Even if the miners were aware of the problem, the Governor said, they did not have the skills to rectify it. He added that mistakes in the original blueprint might have contributed to the tragedy.

Last month's blast claimed 108 lives, with two bodies still missing.

Rescue workers continue to pump water out of the mine in their search for the bodies.