Fifty-six people were killed and hundreds are missing after torrential rains caused a reservoir of mining waste to collapse in Xiangfen county, Shanxi province, Reuters reported. Reuters cited a state media report that the reservoir at the Tashan ore mine may have been filled beyond capacity. Although 1,100 police, firefighters and villages are engaged in relief efforts, heavy rain in the area has slowed the search for survivors. Most victims are thought to be migrant mine workers, making their identification difficult, and making it difficult to tell how many people are missing. State media reported the mine owner and eight others have been held, while several government officials have been fired over the disaster. Iron ore mines have received less regulatory attention than coal mines, but Shanxi launched a three-year program in April to reduce hazards from ore mines and tailings.
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