Fire at potash mine leaves miners trapped
More than half of the mine's 96 miners were trapped underground. All have been accounted for and there are no injuries
SASKATOON—About 50 workers at a potash mine near Saskatoon were still underground September 11 after a fire forced them into refuge stations.
Bill Johnson with Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan had said a power outage stopped some of the underground fans in one area from clearing smoke, which prevented the some of the nearly 100 miners from leaving.
“We still have some folks underground,” said Johnson.
“They’re just being extra cautious in terms of waiting for the smoke to dissipate … We’ll get people up on the surface shortly.”
A government spokeswoman said that as of Thursday morning, 54 of the 96 miners remained underground. All have been accounted for and there are no injuries.
The fire was sparked by an underground water truck about 3 p.m. September 10 and a crew spent the next eight hours putting out the flames and clearing smoke.
Some miners were released throughout the night.
Johnson said the self-contained safety units are equipped to keep workers safe and comfortable.
“There’s food and there’s water. They’re not palatial but they’re sealed off, they’ve got cards to keep occupied.”