Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Mining site accident kills one, injures one in Mondulkiri

Mining site accident kills one, injures one in Mondulkiri

A survivor of a mine collapse in Mondulkiri receives treatment yesterday. Photo supplied
A survivor of a mine collapse in Mondulkiri receives treatment yesterday. Photo supplied

Mining site accident kills one, injures one in Mondulkiri

An accident at a Mondulkiri mine that only last year obtained one of the Kingdom’s first community mining licences has left one man dead and another seriously injured.

According to a Mines and Energy Ministry spokesman, a pulley rope hauling a bucket of debris up an 8-metre mineshaft snapped yesterday, dropping its load on Lim San, 21, and En Nay, 31, killing San. Both hail from Tbong Khmum province.

The shaft, located in Poutong village in the Prey Meas forest, is owned by Lim San’s uncle, Heng Sambath, 41.

“The dead victim is my nephew who lived with me since he was young. I am very sorry for the incident since he is my own nephew,” Sambath said.

For many years, the shaft, along with many like it in the area, operated illegally. Last year, the Ministry of Mines and Energy advised the miners to apply for a community mining licence.

Ministry spokesman Meng Saktheara said that, based on preliminary reports, it appears the accident was the result of negligence on the part of Sambath.

Saktheara explained that safety regulations demand that the digging and transportation of material take place in separate locations. Sambath’s shaft, he said, had both activities taking place on the same spot.

“The big mistake is that the digging and transporting site is the same; they should not be with each other like that. Therefore, it caused death,” he said.

“The second mistake is that the instruments were not checked and the pulley may have been overloaded. The owner did not check the safety standards.”

Sambath denies the rope broke, claiming instead that a single stone fell into the shaft.

The owner was questioned by police at the site, but was not arrested. His site and others in the area have been temporarily closed following the incident.

San Darith, provincial director of the mines and energy department, said yesterday that 43 families hold licences for gold mining businesses in the area.

Following the accident, he said his officers plan to inspect safety standards at the mineshafts on Sunday.

Ministry spokesman Saktheara warned that the ministry will take tough measures, promising to cancel the licences of any owners found in violation of safety regulations.

MOST VIEWED

  • Rainsy lands in Malaysia

    Cambodian opposition figure Sam Rainsy arrived in Kuala Lumpur airport on Saturday afternoon after boarding a flight from Paris, where he has been living for more than four years. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesperson Koy Kuong said on Saturday that Cambodia respected

  • Touch: Rainsy will never return

    Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), has claimed it has achieved 70 per cent of its struggle to find a solution to the current political situation in the Kingdom. Just before boarding a plane at Charles de Gaulle

  • Sokha continues call for dropping of charge after bail conditions reduced

    Not satisfied with having his bail conditions reduced, allowing him to travel freely in Cambodia, Kem Sokha says he wants his charge totally dropped. “As an innocent man who has been in detention for two years even without being found guilty, I continue to demand

  • MEPs' call for Rainsy's safety not European Parliament position

    The European Parliament said on Friday that a statement by 56 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) calling for guarantees of Sam Rainsy’s freedom and safety should he return to Cambodia did not represent its position. Delphine Colard, the European Parliament’s press officer told

  • Sar Kheng: Rainsy return not blocked

    Minister of Interior Sar Kheng clarified that Cambodia had never blocked Sam Rainsy from returning to the Kingdom. However, he said Cambodia reserved the right to take legal action as allowed by law against activities aimed at destroying the Kingdom. “No one blocked the return

  • Cambodia celebrates 66th Independence Day

    Cambodia on Saturday celebrated Independence Day to mark the end of French colonial rule under the leadership of King Father Norodom Sihanouk in 1953. Thousands of people from all walks of life watched King Norodom Sihamoni light the victory flame at Independence Monument to mark the 66