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Mine Death Toll Up to 62 in South Africa

September 03, 1987|United Press International

WELKOM, South Africa — The death toll in Monday's still unexplained accident at a South Africa gold mine rose to 62 Wednesday when officials learned that 12 outside contractors were with 40 miners in an elevator that plunged 1,500 feet to the bottom of a shaft.

Five badly burned miners were rescued Monday night and 10 bodies were found near them in a pump room halfway down the 4,500-foot elevator shaft. Another 40 miners are missing and presumed dead in a steel elevator cage that dropped 1,500 feet at the St. Helena mine.

On Wednesday, the General Mining Corp., owners of the mine, said a contracting company now has established that 12 of its staff were in the elevator that fell.

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