Those guilty in mine incident should stand trial: Rouhani

May 7, 2017 - 20:31

TEHRAN – President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday that those who are found guilty in a coal mine incident should face trial.

An explosion on Wednesday at the Azad-Shahr coal mine in northeastern Golestan province left 35 people dead.

Visiting the site of the coal mine, the president called for investigation into the incident in order to prevent repetition of such disasters in the future.

The blast, which also left 73 other workers injured, occurred as a result of methane gas accumulation at the coal mine 14 kilometers away from the city of Azad-Shahr.

It occured when workers changed the battery of the locomotive, creating a spark.

“There were some technical difficulties with the batteries in the depth of 700 meters and changing the batteries was carried out inside the tunnel rather than outside of it and that triggered the explosion,” Labor and Social Welfare Minister Ali Rabiei said on Thursday.

Rouhani also met with the survivors of the tragic incident and the bereaved families.

“[As government] we are responsible for their lives and it is our duty,” the president said. “Rest assured that we will pursue this issue and also your demands.” 

Officials say they’ve recovered 22 bodies and the search is continuing for the remaining victims.

Rabiei also traveled to Azad-Shahr, where he said many of the country’s 20-, 30-, and 50-year-old mines, especially coal mines, were in need of renovation.

He further said that those trapped might still be alive as they could have been working in a part of the mine where there were no methane gas at the time of the blast.


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