Colombia Recovers Six Bodies After Deadly Coal Mine Accident

Colombian rescue workers recovered six bodies after a blast at a mine killed seven men yesterday in central Colombia.

The men died after an explosion triggered by methane gas ripped through a mine in the province of Cundinamarca, the state-run Colombian Institute of Geology and Mining said today in a statement on its website.

Two other men died in a separate accident yesterday in Cundinamarca, the mining institute said. In June, Colombia’s worst mine explosion in more than three decades killed more than 70 men at a coal mine in a northwestern province.

Colombia is South America’s largest producer of coal and the world’s fourth-largest coal exporter, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The South American country is the world’s 11th-largest coal producer, supplying about 1.2 percent of global 2008 output, according to data on the EIA’s website.

The seven Colombian miners were killed yesterday at a mine called El Roble, while the two men died at the La Loma mine, according to Bogota-based newspaper El Tiempo. The institute didn’t identify the mines by name.

In New Zealand, 29 men are presumed dead after a Nov. 19 blast at a coal mine, the nation’s worst mining tragedy in almost a century.

To contact the reporters on this story: Heather Walsh at hlwalsh@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at dcrofts@bloomberg.net

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