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3 geologists die as tunnel collapses in Spanish potash mine

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Three Spanish geologists have died in a tunnel collapse deep inside a potash mine in northeastern Spain


SURIA, Spain — Three Spanish geologists died in a tunnel collapse deep inside a potash mine in northeastern Spain on Thursday, officers mentioned.

The accident occurred within the Cabanasses de Súria mine round 8 a.m., at a depth of 900 meters (almost 3,000 ft), when the three victims have been inspecting “an inside space,” the mine operator mentioned. It took a number of hours for rescuers to recuperate the our bodies from the mine round 80 kilometers (50 miles) northwest of Barcelona.

The mine is operated by ICL Iberia, the Spanish subsidiary of Tel Aviv-based ICL Group. The Spanish firm confirmed that the three males have been Spanish nationals, aged 28, 29, and 31, and skilled geologists.

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ICL mentioned some 240 employees have been instantly evacuated after the incident.

“The corporate’s board of administrators sincerely laments the accident and sends its deepest regrets and supply of assist to the victims’ households, co-workers and pals,” ICL mentioned in an announcement.

Two of the victims have been additionally postgraduate college students on the Polytechnic College of Catalonia’s Manresa engineering college. A minute’s silence was held on the college on Thursday afternoon.

Mine worker Carlos Arnaldo mentioned the collapsed part was solely constructed “a couple of days in the past.” Catalonia’s regional head of enterprise, Roger Torrent, said that the mine had handed common security inspections. “The checks have been common. The final one was three weeks in the past,” Torrent mentioned.

Two employees died in comparable circumstances on the identical mine a decade in the past.

Catalan regional president Pere Aragonès supplied his condolences to households affected by the “tragic accident.” The regional authorities introduced an investigation, and a judicial probe was additionally opened.

Round 20,000 individuals work in Spain’s mining sector, in line with Vitality Ministry statistics, a determine that has halved prior to now twenty years.

Between 2016 and 2021, the final 12 months for which statistics have been obtainable, a mean of 4 mining employees died yearly within the southern European nation.


O’Mahony reported from Madrid. Joseph Wilson contributed from Barcelona.

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