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Work safety situation in coal-rich Shanxi still grim
Posted: March-12-2009Adjust font size:

Wang Jun, governor of north China's Shanxi Province, said on Wednesday that the work safety situation in the coal-rich province remained grim.

His words came just two weeks after the deadly Tunlan Coal Mine explosion, which claimed 78 lives and injured 114.

Addressing a press conference on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress, Wang said the Tunlan coal mine's manager and a deputy manager in charge of work safety had already been removed from their posts, and "more details would be made public soon."

The exact cause for the explosion was still under investigation, Wang said, but "insufficient safety awareness and weak management (at the mine), lax supervision, and failure to implement relevant policies were mainly to blame."

Shanxi Province contributes one fourth of China's coal production, according to Wang.

He said the provincial government had been dedicated to improve the province's work safety situations in recent years.

"But many of our policies were not fully implemented, leading to a number of major work safety accidents which caused tremendous losses," he said.

On Sept. 8 last year, a deadly landslide triggered by the collapse of an illegal mining dump killed at least 277 people, and forced Meng Xuenong, the then Shanxi governor, to resign. His job was taken over by Wang Jun, who was then the head of the State Administration of Work Safety (SAWS).

Wang said at the press conference that government officials at all levels in the province must make stepped-up efforts to strengthen work safety education, intensify examinations for possible dangers, and improve the equipment and technologies of coal mines to prevent accidents.

Work safety policies must be fully implemented, and management strengthened, he said, adding that those in charge would be held responsible should accidents occur.

"We have the determination and the ability to improve the work safety situation in Shanxi. I am confident of that," said Wang.

Earlier SAWS statistics showed that the death rate of coal mine accidents in China dropped 20.4 percent year on year to 1.182 per million tonnes of coal output in 2008.

The death toll stood at 91,172, down 15.1 percent from the previous year. It was the first time since 1995 the figure fell below 100,000.

Source: XinhuaEditor: oulin
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