Dozens feared dead after mine blast in Donetsk

Dozens of miners were trapped underground and feared dead after a blast on Wednesday at a coal mine in Donetsk, with rescuers saying the chance of finding many survivors was slim, Reuters reports.

Figures given by medical workers at the scene, miners and a mine official speaking on condition of anonymity pointed to there being about 50 miners still underground.

Earlier on Tuesday, some officials had said more than 30 people were killed in the early morning blast, although later officials would not confirm that figure. Rescue services were working to reach the epicentre of the blast, in a shaft deep underground, they said.

Asked what were the chances of trapped miners surviving, a medical worker said: “It’s getting smaller and smaller all the time, because of the methane, the hot air, burns to the airways.”

She said two buses had been brought to the mine in preparation for carrying away the bodies of the dead.

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