MOSCOW (Reuters) – A fire broke out on Sunday at a Siberian coal mine, Russia’s TASS news agency cited the emergency services as saying, with operations underway to bring 139 miners to the surface, weeks after a blast at a mine in the same region killed 51 people.
There were conflicting reports of the number of miners underground. RIA initially reported that there were 128 miners underground. Interfax cited the mine’s administration as saying that 10 people had been brought to the surface.
The Ruban mine in Russia’s Kemerovo region is owned by the SUEK coal company, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The TASS news agency cited a company spokesperson as saying a seam had overheated and that the emergency response was underway.
The co-owner of the Listvyazhnaya mine in Kemerovo, where an explosion killed 51 people in November, was detained on Wednesday. President Vladimir Putin in December accused management of falsifying methane data at the mine.
(Reporting by Alexander Marrow; additional reporting by Elena Fabrichnaya; editing by Jason Neely, William Maclean)