2 miners dead, 6 missing after copper mine tremor in Poland

AP , Wednesday 30 Nov 2016

Rescuers in southwestern Poland have recovered a body after a massive cave-in at a copper mine following an earthquake, bringing the confirmed death toll to two, with six people still missing, a spokeswoman for the mining company said Wednesday.

The tremor occurred shortly after 9 p.m. Tuesday some 1,100 meters (3,610 feet) underground in the Rudna mine, in Polkowice.

Jolanta Piatek, spokeswoman for the KGHM Polska Miedz, or Polish Copper, mining corporation, said that the body was found underground. Earlier, one of nine miners brought to the surface shortly after the cave-in had also died. Five others have been hospitalized, while nine rescue teams continue the search for those still missing.

The rescuers are receiving signals from the locators of the missing miners, but have had no direct contact with them, Piatek told The Associated Press.

The German Research Center for Geosciences in Potsdam, near Berlin, reported a magnitude-4.5 shallow earthquake in the Polkowice region at the time of the cave-in.

Work continues as usual in other areas of the mine, Piatek said.

Known as the Polish State Mining and Metallurgical Combine under communism, KGHM went through restructuring and partial privatization in 1991 as Poland shifted to a market economy. It has grown to be one of the world's major copper and silver producers. It also has mines in Chile, Canada and the United States.

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