SARAJEVO: A blast injured 15 miners on Saturday in a coal mine in the central Bosnian town of Travnik that supplies the country’s largest power utility, witnesses and police said.
“The cause of the accident is still unknown,” regional police spokesman Rusmir Prohan said, adding that mine inspectors and a local prosecutor would carry out an investigation.
Local media, citing union representatives, said the accident was believed to have been caused by a methane blast. A reporter at the scene told Reuters that 15 miners were being treated in two nearby hospitals for burns and gas poisoning.
The police spokesman said some miners had been admitted to hospital but none had suffered life threatening injuries. The Abid Lolic mine in Travnik produces coal for Bosnia’s largest power utility EPBiH and employs 276 miners.
No one at EPBiH or the mine management was immediately available for comment.
Deadly accidents are common at Bosnian coal mines, starved of investment and upgrades since the country’s 1992-95 war. Last year, four miners were killed and two injured when a roof caved in on them in another central Bosnian mine.