29 miners dead after 2nd blast at New Zealand mine

Infinite Zero

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Greymough, New Zealand – Police say all 29 workers missing in a New Zealand coal mine are dead after a second explosion Wednesday that no one could have survived.

Explosive and poisonous gases had prevented rescuers from entering the mine to search for the missing men since an initial explosion on Friday at the Pike River Mine. But even if any had survived, the second blast would have killed them, police superintendent Gary Knowles said. [/p]

Explosive and poisonous gases had prevented rescuers from entering the mine to search for the missing men since an initial explosion on Friday at the Pike River Mine. But even if any had survived, the second blast would have killed them, police superintendent Gary Knowles said.

"Unfortunately I have to inform the public of New Zealand at 2:37 p.m. today there was another massive explosion underground and based on that explosion no one would have survived," said Knowles, in charge of the rescue operation. "The blast was prolific, just as severe as the first blast."

The second blast came after the first progress in days for the rescue attempt, when a drilling team broke a narrow shaft through to the section of the mine where the 29 workers were believed to have been working. And two robots had crawled their way into the tunnel, giving authorities their first view of the inside of the mine.

It was not immediately known what triggered the second blast, which came almost exactly five days after the initial explosion. Pike River chief executive said the rescue teams were not doing anything that could have triggered it.

"It was a natural eventuation, it could have happened on the second day, it could have happened on the third day," he told reporters.

In recent days, officials became increasingly pessimistic about the chances of pulling the men alive from a network of tunnels some 1 1/2 miles (2 kilometers) deep in the side of a mountain, following the first powerful explosion on Friday. Nothing had been heard from the missing miners since that blast.

Earlier Wednesday, drillers using a diamond-tipped drill bit to prevent sparks finished boring a 530-ft. (162-meter) hole to the mine's main tunnel. It was a key step, giving officials their first information from that section of the mine and allowing testing for levels of dangerous gases.

Hot air and gas rushed the hole when the chamber roof was punctured, and Whittall said earlier Wednesday that initial tests showed it was "extremely high in carbon monoxide, very high in methane and fairly low in oxygen." Carbon monoxide _ the polluting gas from car exhausts _ is extremely poisonous, while explosive methane is the gas believed to have ignited in Friday's blast.

And, an army robot usually used for bomb disposal had crawled two-thirds of a mile (1 kilometer) into the tunnel on Wednesday and found a miner's helmet with its fixed light still glowing. Officials said the helmet belonged to one of two miners who managed to escape the initial blast.

Security footage of Friday's blast shows a wall of white dust surging from the mine entrance and small stones rolling past for about 50 seconds as the force of the blast rips out of the mine. The dust was blown across a valley and the blast wave shot up a ventilation shaft, tearing off surface vents hundreds of feet above.

New Zealand's mines have been safe historically, with 181 deaths in 114 years. The worst disaster was in 1896, when 65 died in a gas explosion. Friday's explosion occurred in the same coal seam.
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RIP to all those miners
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Slyakin

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God, these mine explosions are getting worse and worse every day. Glad the Chilean miners got out, at least.
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I hope the families can cope.
 

injected11

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May they rest in peace... my condolences to their families.

It might sound horrible, but I hope the initial explosion ended things quickly for them. Slowly suffocating in a sea of carbon monoxide just wouldn't be right, nor would being forced to watch those around you slowly die.
 

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whats with all the mine disasters these days i think it's high time the mining industry take a good look at how they do things and decide that change is necessary to make mining more safer. i've seen quite a few docos on mining and you'd be surprised the corners they cut lots of mines don't even have regular safety or maintenance checks.
 

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Yeah whats up with these mining explosion things.. Some kind of new fashion? Each country that participates has to get the most miners trapped and keep them alive for more than other countries.


Im serious.
 

Slyakin

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Theraima said:
Yeah whats up with these mining explosion things.. Some kind of new fashion? Each country that participates has to get the most miners trapped and keep them alive for more than other countries.


Im serious.
Was that really necessary?
 

Sterling

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Slyakin said:
Theraima said:
Yeah whats up with these mining explosion things.. Some kind of new fashion? Each country that participates has to get the most miners trapped and keep them alive for more than other countries.


Im serious.
Was that really necessary?
It does kinda ring true, even though they are accidents.

Every time I hear about one of these accidents I get sad. However, these mines are no where near as dangerous as Chinese mines. There have been many explosions and no safety reform. With the primitive mining techniques they use that only spells disaster.
 

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Just so everyone knows Australia have been following this news extremely closely and the difference between the Chiliean miners and all the other ones is that they were in gold or silver or other valuable mines where as the NZ miners were trapped in a coal mine so the chance of living im sad to say was already quite low as the gas levels that were tested already contained large amounts or carbon monoxide but then this explosion would definetly have finished them off
 

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well its official....mining is the worst job ever.....I know it creates jobs and stuff but honestly wouldn't it be better if we just found a way to do it all with machines...
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Anyways...I hope the best for their family's
 

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QUOTE said:
Police say all 29 workers missing in a New Zealand coal mine are dead after a second explosion Wednesday that no one could have survived.

Just because you say that they're dead without even checking doesn't make it so. People can survive these blasts, I mean all 33 Chilean miners got out, there can be a few survivors.
 

injected11

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Knyaz Vladimir said:
QUOTE said:
Police say all 29 workers missing in a New Zealand coal mine are dead after a second explosion Wednesday that no one could have survived.

Just because you say that they're dead without even checking doesn't make it so. People can survive these blasts, I mean all 33 Chilean miners got out, there can be a few survivors.
It wasn't just the explosions. The mine shaft had very little oxygen and was filled with carbon monoxide, which sits in the lungs and displaces oxygen, slowly making it impossible to breathe.
 

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injected11 said:
Knyaz Vladimir said:
QUOTE said:
Police say all 29 workers missing in a New Zealand coal mine are dead after a second explosion Wednesday that no one could have survived.

Just because you say that they're dead without even checking doesn't make it so. People can survive these blasts, I mean all 33 Chilean miners got out, there can be a few survivors.
It wasn't just the explosions. The mine shaft had very little oxygen and was filled with carbon monoxide, which sits in the lungs and displaces oxygen, slowly making it impossible to breathe.
Unfortunately. Even if they all miraculously survived, the carbon monoxide would have killed them by now.
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Knyaz Vladimir

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Slyakin said:
injected11 said:
Knyaz Vladimir said:
QUOTE said:
Police say all 29 workers missing in a New Zealand coal mine are dead after a second explosion Wednesday that no one could have survived.

Just because you say that they're dead without even checking doesn't make it so. People can survive these blasts, I mean all 33 Chilean miners got out, there can be a few survivors.
It wasn't just the explosions. The mine shaft had very little oxygen and was filled with carbon monoxide, which sits in the lungs and displaces oxygen, slowly making it impossible to breathe.
Unfortunately. Even if they all miraculously survived, the carbon monoxide would have killed them by now.
cry.gif
What if the monoxide were to filter outside, leaving some air for the miners? I know I'm going far, but I want to be optimistic on this. AT LEAST CHECK!
 
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