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Death toll rises to 23 in China mine blast

Nov. 26, 2012 at 8:50 AM

LIUPANSHUI, China, Nov. 26 (UPI) -- Rescuers in China pulled a body from a southwestern China coal mine Monday, raising the death toll from a coal-and-gas explosion to 23, officials said.

The victim was the last to be removed from the Xiangshui Coal Mine in Liupanshui City, Guizhou province, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Five miners were pulled from the mine alive, with one in critical condition.

The blast struck the mine Saturday.

An initial investigation showed inadequate safety measures were to blame, Xinhua reported.

Guizhou Deputy Gov. Sun Guoqiang said there have been more fatal accidents at state-run mines than in private ones, and he ordered a safety overhaul of the province's mining industry.

Government figures released in mid-October showed 1,146 people died in 650 mining accidents in China this year.

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