A miner has been killed and another has been rescued after they were trapped following a roof fall at Kellingley Colliery in North Yorkshire.
UK Coal have confirmed that rescue workers were unable to save one of the miners at the pit near Pontefract.
The two men became trapped up to their waist by falling debris three miles from the entrance of the mine, one of Britain’s deepest remaining pits.
Earlier, the President of the Kellingley branch of the National Union of Mineworkers, Mr Kidger, told Channel 4 News both miners ‘were on their way out’ of the colliery, but would not elaborate on any more details or the condition they were in.
An air ambulance spokesman said a helicopter had been sent out at about 5pm.
“We deployed a specialist hazardous area response team who are trained to work underground.
“They went with two doctors, a rapid response vehicle, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance and an incident officer is also on the scene,” the spokesperson said.
The MP for Pontefract and Castleford, Yvette Cooper, fought back tears as she told Labour supporters at a party conference fringe event there had been a mining accident on the edge of her constituency.
The shadow home secretary apologised to the audience in Liverpool for cutting short her appearance.
There have been two recent safety related incidents at the mine, which employs about 500 staff.
In 2009, Ian Cameron, 46, died after an apparent equipment failure. On 30 November 2010, 200 workers were evacuated from the pit after a methane explosion underground.
In September 2008, Don Cook died in a rock fall.
Kellingley supplies coal to local power stations and produces some coal for households. A sign at the entrance reads: “Welcome to Kellingley, where safety comes first. Remember, think safety every hour of the day.”