Survivors from Pniówek mine disaster in critical condition

Przemysław Strzelec, deputy head of the intensive therapy unit at the Burn Treatment Centre in Siemianowice Śląskie (pictured), southern Poland, said the conditions of the four men were stable but very serious, with no marked signs of improvement as yet. Zbigniew Meissner/PAP

Four miners rescued from last Wednesday's coal mining accident at the Pniówek coal mine, in Poland, were in critical condition, doctors from the burn treatment clinic where the men were hospitalised reported on Monday.

Przemysław Strzelec, deputy head of the intensive therapy unit at the Burn Treatment Centre in Siemianowice Śląskie, southern Poland, said the conditions of the four men were stable but very serious, with no marked signs of improvement as yet.

Strzelec added that all four miners had severe burns to 80-90 percent of their bodies and their respiratory tracts, and have been induced into a pharmacological coma.

He added that 16 other Pniówek survivors were hospitalised at the clinic, 11 of them with respiratory tract burns.

Last Wednesday, four miners and a rescuer lost their lives when a series of methane explosions rocked the Pniówek coal mine in Pawłowice, southern Poland, as 42 miners were working on a night shift.

Twenty-one miners were then transferred to hospitals, most of them with burns to their respiratory tracts.