© Reuters. Media members report outside the coal mine as search and rescue operation continues after an explosion, in Amasra in the northern Bartin province, Turkey October 15, 2022. REUTERS/Cagla Gurdogan
By Mert Ozkan
BARTIN, Turkey (Reuters) -The death toll after an explosion in a coal mine in Turkey’s northern Bartin province on Friday has reached 41, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday.
Earlier, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said 58 of the 110 people working in the mine when the blast occurred were rescued by the teams or got out by themselves.
Soylu also said one miner was discharged from hospital while 10 were still receiving treatment in Bartin and Istanbul.
Authorities said Turkish prosecutors have launched an investigation into the cause of the incident but initial indications were that the blast was caused by firedamp, a term referring to methane in coal mines.
Energy Minister Fatih Donmez said a fire in the mine was largely contained but fire isolation and cooling efforts were continuing after the incident that took place 350 metres (0.2 miles) below ground.
In 2014, 301 workers were killed in Turkey ‘s worst ever mining disaster in the western town of Soma, 350 kms (217 miles) south of Istanbul.