MOSCOW (AP) — At least 10 people are dead and seven are missing in a blast at a coal mine in Russia's northern mining region.
Russia's Emergency Situations Ministry says nearly 300 rescuers are searching for the men at the mine in the Komi region. The ministry says the blast happened in the mining area because of a build-up of methane.
Deadly accidents at coal mines are frequent in Russia because of negligence and lax safety regulations. And officials say Russian investigators have opened a probe into suspected violations of safety rules at the mine.
There were 22 men in the mine at the time of the blast. Two of them were able to get out of the mine on their own and three were rescued.
Emergency Situations Minister Vladimir Puchkov tells Russian news agencies that there's still a hope the missing men would be found alive.