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Coal mine explosion traps workers in Iran

Tehran: Explosion in a coal mine in Northern Iran traps 40-50 workers.

The state media reported, ‘A large explosion struck a coal mine in Northern Iran, trapping dozens of miners and killing at least two, this Wednesday’.

Sadeq Ali Moghadam, Head of the Golestian provincial Emergency Management Department, was reported saying that 40 to 50 people are believed to be trapped in the mine outside of the town of Azadshahr, according to the IRNS agency.

Ali Yazerloo spokesperson said, the blast happened at 12:45 p.m. local time (0945 GMT) and that the provincial governor is heading to the scene.

Several officials blamed the explosion on accumulated gas which is now affecting even the rescue teams .

Iranian news reports said the explosion happened while workers were changing shifts, as reported in The Hindu.

More than 500 workers are employed at the Zemestanyurt mine, which lies 14 kilometers (9 miles) from Azadshahr, according to IRNA news agency.

Golestan runs along Iran’s northern border with Turkmenistan.