17 killed in mine explosion in China

The blast happened around noon at a mine operated by the Baoma Mining Co.

17 killed in mine explosion in China

File photo. Image: Mark Schiefelbein AP/Press Association Images

Seventeen people were killed and many more trapped following a gas explosion in a mine in China.

The blast happened around noon at a mine operated by the Baoma Mining Co. in the Yuanbaoshan district of Chifeng city, Xinhua reported.

The explosion's cause is under investigation.

Last month, 5 people died following a gas explosion in a coal mine in the western region of Chongqing.

China's mining industry has long been among the world's deadliest, although safety improvements and the closure of smaller, more dangerous mines have reduced the death toll in recent years.

China is the world's largest producer and consumer of coal but has announced plans to shutter more than 1,000 outdated mines. The head of China's State Administration of Work Safety said this year that struggling coal mines might be likely to overlook maintenance.