Many miners not so lucky
33 miners were rescued in Chile with many around the world watching. Others are not so lucky. Victor Figueroa-Clark writes about Colombia's bad record on mine safety on the website of Justice for Colombia. Mines there are not required to have gas detectors and in June 2010 a massive explosion in a coal mine killed 73 miners. Making protests about safety after seeing colleagues killed means that you are likely to be sacked. That happened to 20 union activists at a mine owned by US multi-national Drummond. The Colombian government backed the company's action.
A Reuters report shown on the website of MAC: Mines and Communities says that the leading mineworkers' federation, ICEM, believes that at least 12000 die annually in the world in mining accidents. Many fatalities are not recorded and only 24 nations have ratified the ILO Safety and Health in Mines Convention.
Another country with a poor record on safety for miners is China.
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