China coal mine fire kills 21 people,1 missing

Chinese rescue teams continue searching for one missing person after coal mine fire which broke out in northeastern region of China killing 21 miners

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

A miner carries load of wet coal on a basket inside a deep coal mine shaft, January 31, 2013.

Authorities say a late-night fire at a coal mine has killed 21 people and left one missing in the northeastern Chinese province of Heilongjiang.

The official Xinhua News Agency said Saturday that the fire at the Xinghua mine in the city of Jixi was brought under control and that 21 bodies have been recovered at the mine, owned by the Heilongjiang Longmay Mining Holding Group.

The provincial work safety administration confirmed the death toll on Saturday.

A work safety employee who only gave his family name of Xing says rescuers are searching the missing person.

Xinhua says 38 miners were working underground when an angle belt caught fire on Friday night and that 16 people were pulled out to safety.

Xinhua does not say what caused the fire.