An explosion at a coal mine in Colombia’s Cucunuba municipality has killed seven miners, reported, citing Colombia’s National Mining Agency (ANM) as saying in a communiqué.

The workers were trapped at the coal mine at the time of the explosion, which occurred on 20 April 2023 due to suspected methane gas accumulation.

Following two days of rescue operations, ANM’s Mine Safety and Rescue Group retrieved the bodies.

The rescue efforts were supported by personnel from Colombia’s Ministry of Mines and Energy, the fire department, the Red Cross, civil defence, as well as the departmental risk unit.

The statement reads: “In the first report made by the ANM Mining Rescue team, we knew that 11 people were involved in the accident. Four of them were rescued and immediately transferred to a health centre.

“Three people died when the accident took place and four remained trapped. Unfortunately, the latter was found dead.”

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By GlobalData

According to the official letter, the ANM ordered in December 2022 to close most of the mines in Cucunubá on the ground of unsafe working conditions.

ANM president Álvaro Pardo was quoted by “Mine title holders ought to invest additional resources to guarantee the safety of their workers.

“They also have to comply with suspension and closure orders issued by this office.”