First blast at Pike River killed most miners says Mines Rescue

The Pike River Mine EntranceThe NZ Mines Rescue Service believes the initial shockwave of the first Pike River explosion killed most of the 29 men underground immediately. The initial explosion occurred in the mine on November 19 last year. Lawyer for the Mines Rescue Service, Garth Gallaway, made the claim during the inquiry into the disaster this morning. Police Assistant Commissioner Grant Nicholls is giving evidence under cross-examination as inquiry continues into its second week. He was based in [...]

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Pike River explosion had “origins in repealing of regulations”

Robin Hughes, the former chief inspector of coal mines told the Royal Commission into the tragedy today that "The explosion at Pike River mine..had its origins in the repealing of the Coal Mining Act and regulations in 1993." The commission is inquiring into the disaster at the West Coast coal mine in November last year which left 29 miners and contractors dead. Mr Hughes, who has over 40 years of coal mining experience, criticised mine safety changes made by [...]

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Green Party attacks government over Pike River mine safety

Photo from inside the Pike River mine showing the 55 metre ladder with no safety platforms.NZ Green party MP Kevin Hague attacked the government over mine safety standards using a photo from inside the Pike River coal mine as evidence. The picture tabled in parliament showed a 55m vertical ladder inside the coal pit. Before safety rules were relaxed under a National government in the 1990s, mine ladders were required to have safety platforms every nine metres. Kevin Hague says [...]

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