China miners rescued from flooded pit

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China miners rescued from flooded pit

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22 coal miners in China have been rescued along with seven emergency workers who had been trapped with them.

Wearing sunglasses or blindfolds to protect them from the glare, they were brought out one by one on stretchers to applause, as Chinese TV broadcast the scene live.

They had been caught in a pit for over 24 hours by a flood.

At least 35 men were working underground at the mine near Neijiang city in Sichuan province in southern China.

13 managed to escape when the water came in, but more than 20 were trapped. The rescuers then also became stuck themselves when they went in to try to save the men.

The rescue represents good news in a Chinese mining industry often hit by disasters. Last year alone 2,631 people were killed in mining accidents, according to official figures.

The pit in Sichuan was reportedly a small, private affair and relatively well regulated. It is thought the mine was being upgraded for safety work.

China depends on coal for most of its energy needs.