Methane gas explosion kills eight people in Ukraine coal mine

Methane gas explosion kills eight people in Ukraine coal mine

A gas explosion killed eight people in a Ukraine coal mine (Stock image)

Thursday, March 2, 2017

A methane gas explosion has reportedly killed eight coal miners in Ukraine.

Six others were also injured at the Stepnaya mine in the Lvov region and local police said that 20 people had to be rescued, RT reported.

The emergency services said the explosion caused ground to cave in on one of the conveyor belts at a depth of 550 metres. 

It had already been rated as a highly dangerous mine due to the amount of methane gas inside.

Local authorities say there had been preparations at the mine before the explosion to increase output, due to a coal shortage in the country. The energy sector in Ukraine is currently in a state of emergency.

An official told 122 Ukraine TV: "Whether the explosion is connected with the preparations for increasing the output or anything else is up for an investigative commission to establish."

It is possible that Ukraine could suffer from a power shortage due to a blockade in the east on rail tracks created by activists over a month ago which is hindering the coal industry.