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Fourteen miners are trapped after a gold mine shaft collapsed in northwestern Tanzania. . PHOTO | BBC

Rescuers in northwestern Tanzania searched Friday for more than a dozen miners trapped underground in the latest accident to befall the country’s mining industry.

Fourteen miners were buried in the rubble about 38m under when a shaft at the Chinese-owned RZ Gold mine in the remote town of Geita collapsed at about 3am local time on Thursday.

A government official in the area said rescue efforts are underway and were speeding up after two more excavators were provided on Friday bring the total to five.

“So far, they have been able to dig about 15m deep… they are aiming at digging up to 35m,” Geita Regional Police Commander Mponjoli Mwabulambo said.

“We hope the victims are still alive because the rescuers managed to push in pipes to supply oxygen underground,” he added.

The additional excavators were provided by Busolwa, Nyarugusu and Geita Gold mines also located in the region.

The trapped workers include 13 Tanzanians and a Chinese national.

Last March, five gold miners died at another site in the region.

Source: The East African

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