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Rescuers dig in 2 Chinese mine accidents

Sept. 23, 2012 at 8:26 AM

HARBIN, China, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- Rescue efforts were under way Sunday in two coal mining accidents in northeastern China that trapped at least 17 workers, emergency officials said.

The first incident began Saturday when a mine flooded in Heilongjiang province. Six workers were trapped and hadn't been rescued by Sunday morning, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

At another mine in the same region, a fire broke out underground where 13 men were working Sunday morning. Two were rescued and efforts were ongoing to free the other 11, officials said.

The mining was illegal, as the owners had been ordered by the government to stop work Sept. 3 because of a lapsed permit, Xinhua said.

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