Seventeen miners were killed by a dynamite explosion at a coal mine in central China, authorities said today.
Another worker was injured in the explosion at the coal mine in Chenzhou city in Hunan province yesterday, said a duty officer surnamed Zhang at the State Administration of Work Safety.
A preliminary investigation showed dynamite stored in the Shuguang Coal Mine in the county of Rucheng exploded, creating toxic gas that killed the workers, Zhang said.
Zhang said the mine was privately run and that no other miners were missing.
Although safety conditions have improved in recent years, China's mining industry is by far the world's deadliest, with accidents and blasts killing more than 2,600 coal miners last year.