Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Blood on the coal - Turkey

A reminder this morning of what a dangerous occupation coal-mining remains. Up to 32 miners are missing after an explosion in the state-run Karadon mine near Zonguldak on the Black Sea in Turkey.

Turkey’s safety standards are generally regarded as lagging behind those of most industrialised nations. In February a methane explosion killed 13 workers in another mine, while a further 19 miners died in an explosion in western Turkey last December. Turkey’s worst ever mining disaster happened in 1992 when 270 miners perished in another pit in the Zongalduk region.

Zongalduk was a small village until the 1850’s, but the exploitation of the rich coal seams in the Zonguldak mountains have turned it into the second biggest city on the Black Sea coast.

The world’s most dangerous coal mines are reckoned to be those in China, where thousands of miners are killed every year. (See also my blogs of Feb 22, March 10, Nov 19, 23, 2009 and Jan 16 and April 14, 2010.)

*For a review of my book Disaster! see Natural Hazards Observer P17 http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/o/archives/2010/may_observerweb.pdf. And for a review (in German) of my A Disastrous History of Britain see http://bauen-und-miauen.blogspot.com/

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