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Workers escape unharmed from Kiruna mine fire

Published söndag 1 februari 2015 kl 11.21
Kiruna mine LKAB
A view of the LKAB underground iron ore mine in Kiruna, northern Sweden. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Over 200 workers were evacuated from the Kiruna mine on Sunday after a fire broke out 935 metres below ground, according to a statement from the Norbotten regional council.

In the stament, issued Sunday afternoon, the regional council said the fire was "under control" and that nobody had been injured. 

At around 9 a.m. a diesel-operated loader caught fire nearly 1 kilometre below ground as 256 people were at work in the mine, news agency TT reported.

Speaking to tabloid Aftonbladet on Sunday morning, police spokesman Hans Österlund said no nobody was near the loader and, citing Trond Olofsson of the local police force, Swedish Television also reported that the two people who handle the loader were 735 metres below ground, but at a safe distance away from the fire. 

The mine in Kiruna, northern Sweden is owned by LKAB. It is the world's largest underground iron ore mine. At 11.20 a.m. the mining company confirmed that a fire had broken out and that an evacuation operation was underway."The work places near the fire are currently being evacuated," Nelson told Aftonbladet.

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