As many as 27 people died after a fire broke out in a small gold mine in southern Peru on Sunday, in the country’s single deadliest mining accident in more than two decades, CNN reported citing the local government.
In a statement, the local government said a short-circuit sparked the fire in the early morning hours of Saturday in the southern region of Arequipa. “It’s been confirmed by the Yanaquihua police station, there are 27 dead,” local prosecutor Giovanni Matos told local television on Sunday.
The Peruvian Council of Ministers expressed solidarity with the families of miners who died after a fire broke out in the shaft of the Yanaquihua mine in Arequipa, as per the CNN report.
Peruvian Council of Ministers tweeted in Spanish tweeted, “We express our solidarity with the families of the miners who died after a fire in the shaft of the Yanaquihua mine in the Arequipa region.”
Images on local media and on social media showed dark plumes of smoke pouring out of the site.
Peru’s Presidency in a statement on Twitter said that the ministries have been working to rescue and transfer the bodies, as per the CNN report. Further, the Peruvian government will provide all the necessary support to the regional government and the Municipality of Condesuyos.
Peru’s Presidency tweeted, “We express our condolences to the relatives and the people of Arequipa for the death of the 27 miners, an event that occurred in the Yanaquihua sector, Condesuyos province in Arequipa.”
It further said, “The ministries @MininterPeru and @MindefPeru have been working since the beginning of this tragedy to rescue and transfer the bodies. As a Government, we will provide all the necessary support to the regional government and the Municipality of Condesuyos in these moments of pain.”
Peru is the world’s top gold producer and second-largest copper producer. According to data from Peru’s Ministry of Energy and Mines, the incident is the single deadliest mining accident since 2000, CNN reported.