An accident at a coal mine in southwest China on Tuesday evening killed 22 workers and left two injured. The tragedy at the Yanshitai Coal Mine in Wansheng District, located near the city of Chongqing, is one of a slew of mining catastrophes that have been plaguing the coal-rich country recently. In January, two miners were killed in northern Shanxi province, while 14 workers were killed during a gas explosion at a coal mine in the southwestern province of Yunnan in April.
The Chongqing Municipal Administration of Coal Mine Safety told the state-owned Xinhua news agency that 28 miners were working in a shaft at 5:40 p.m., when a “gas incident” occurred. Six escaped and survived, and the bodies of the 22 fatalities have been recovered.
China’s mines produce the most coal in the world, but maintain the highest fatality rates because of lax safety precautions. News of the accident came on the same day that China, which has the highest levels of pollution partially due to the burning of carbon-releasing coal, vowed to lower carbon emissions.