Hopes dim for Chinese miners - CNN.com More than 180 Chinese coal miners trapped in flooded shafts have slim hopes of survival, but officials said they would press on with frantic rescue efforts after one of the nation's worst mine disasters.This is one reason why Westinghouse has to go to China to build them the Nukes. They need the electricity. They need to curb the deaths from the coal mines.
In the eastern province Shandong, 172 miners were pinned down after the rain-swollen Wen River overcame flood defenses and surged down the shaft on Friday. Nine others were trapped in a shaft nearby.
China relies on coal for most of its energy needs, pushing coal prices to record levels in the mainland, the world's top producer and consumer of the fuel.However, what happens when the flood waters come and sweep into the Nukes? What about a work site problem, but with radiation?
That demand for coal to feed rapid economic growth in the world's fourth-largest economy has led some mine operators to push production beyond safe limits, despite Beijing's efforts to crack down on corruption and lax enforcement of standards.
The miners make about 1,500 yuan ($198) a month and many were farmers working the fields around Tai'an attracted by the relatively higher wages offered by the mines. It is not unusual for fathers and sons to work together in the coal mines.
The scene of weary emergency workers and anxious relatives echoed a mine accident in the United States, which has a much cleaner safety record but where three people have died trying to save six miners trapped in a Utah coal mine.
Mining is risky worldwide, but China's coal industry is deadlier than any other country's, with about 2,163 coal miners killed in 1,320 accidents in the first seven months of the year.