Coal mine explosion in Turkey; 363 safe, 238 dead, rescue efforts ongoing

Miners wait amidst the rubble of exploded coal mine in Turkey to hear news of their fellow workers.   (photo credit:  Ahmet Sik/Getty Images)

Miners wait amidst the rubble of exploded coal mine in Turkey to hear news of their fellow workers. (photo credit: Ahmet Sik/Getty Images)

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared three days of national mourning in Turkey after a huge explosion ripped through a coal mine in Soma yesterday.  A few hours ago President Erdogan confirmed in a press conference that 363 miners have been found alive and 238 dead bodies have been recovered.  There were 787 working in the mine at the time of the explosion.

Prior to the killing fires surging through the mines yesterday, Turkey’s worst mining disaster was the 1992 gas explosion in a mine close to Zonguldak (near the shores of the Black Sea).  The death toll in that tragedy was 263 miners.  Authorities fear that this explosion is on track to far surpass that one in the sheer numbers of lives lost.

Many of the miners Tuesday were working approximately 460 yards below ground, but  (Continue reading full story here.)

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