19 February, 2015Nine years have gone by since tragedy struck at Pasta de Conchos. Sixty-five miners lost their lives after being trapped by an explosion at this Grupo Mexico mine. Sixty-three bodies were never recovered and are still in the mine.
A miner’s routine consists of working hundreds of metres below the ground and he only sees daylight at the end of his shift. It is one of the most dangerous of jobs and miners are at a much greater risk of suffering workplace accidents than workers in other professions.
On19 February 2006, industrial homicide was committed at Grupo Mexico’s Pasta de Conchos coal mine 8, at San Juan de Sabinas. An explosion inside the mine trapped 65 miners. Two bodies were recovered in 2006 and 2007 but no further attempts have been made to recover the other bodies.
The fight to recover the bodies
The families of the dead miners have been fighting for nine years to have the bodies of the miners recovered and for the right to honour their deceased relatives. The Catholic church in the coalfield has spoken out in support of the families and called for justice and for the authorities to respond positively to the requests made by the families. The church held a special mass at the mine to pray for eternal rest for the 63 dead miners.
19 February 2015 will be the ninth anniversary of the tragedy. IndustriALL Global Union supports demands for the state and federal governments to inspect the mines and protect the lives of miners; for the bodies to be recovered and given a decent burial; for a thorough investigation into what happened and punishment for those responsible.