SURIA, SPAIN (AP) – Three Spanish geologists died in a tunnel collapse deep inside a potash mine in northeastern Spain on Thursday, officials said.
The accident occurred in the Cabanasses de Súria mine around 8am, at a depth of 900 metres, when the three victims were inspecting “an interior area”, the mine operator said. It took several hours for rescuers to recover the bodies from the mine around 80 kilometres northwest of Barcelona.
The mine is operated by ICL Iberia, the Spanish subsidiary of Tel Aviv-based ICL Group.
The Spanish company confirmed that the three men were Spanish nationals, aged 28, 29, and 31, and experienced geologists.
ICL said some 240 workers were immediately evacuated after the incident. “The company’s board of directors sincerely laments the accident and sends its deepest regrets and offer of support to the victims’ families, co-workers and friends,” ICL said in a statement.
Two of the victims were also postgraduate students at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia’s Manresa engineering school.