A fire at the ArcelorMittal-operated Kazakhstanskaya coal mine in Kazakhstan has killed five workers.

Approximately 227 employees were working at the Kazakhstan mine site at the time of the accident, which occurred on 17 August 2023.

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Located in Kazakhstan’s Karaganda region, the mine is owned by ArcelorMittal Temirtau, the Kazakh mining unit of ArcelorMittal.

ArcelorMittal Temirtau said that an accident liquidation plan was immediately launched and 222 people were rescued from the site.

Commenting on the accident, ArcelorMittal Temirtau executive director Viktor Gafiulov said: “We systematically worked to improve the level of mine safety, and this accident caused serious damage to all our efforts. No words that can be said now can comfort families who have lost loved ones.

“On behalf of ArcelorMittal Temirtau, I deeply regret this accident and that we were unable to successfully evacuate everyone from the mine. We will do everything in our power to support the affected families.”

The company said it is working with government agencies to assess the causes of the accident.

ArcelorMittal Temirtau currently operates an integrated steel plant in Temirtau, as well as eight coal mines across Karaganda and four iron ore mines in central and northern Kazakhstan.

The steel plant has an annual capacity of four million tonnes of crude steel. It produces hot and cold rolled steel, tin plates, galvanized steel and polymer-coated coils, welded pipes, coke, and chemical by-products.

In June 2023, ArcelorMittal agreed to divest its idled iron and steel plant in the Point Lisas Industrial Estate, Couva, Trinidad, to Trinidad and Tobago’s TT Iron Steel Company for an undisclosed sum.