Fire at mine

Fire broke out at a mine in the Chita region of eastern Siberia. Thirty-one miners were said trapped underground, according to the Russian emergencies ministry. Thirty-three miners escaped the blaze and were helped to the surface by rescue workers.

The emergencies ministry said it happened almost 130 metres below the surface at breakfast time on Thursday. Work continues to extinguish the blaze and rescue those trapped.

 Roman Sidorov, Chita emergencies ministry spokesman, said the mine is located in the Dorosinsky settlement, about 100 kilometres from Chita. The incident was rated at the highest degree of complexity, he said. Forty-eight people were in the mine when the fire started and the incident was thought linked to neglectful operations during welding work.