Chile Congress blames San Jose mine owners for collapse

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A congressional commission in Chile has blamed the mine owners for the rockfall which left 33 men trapped underground for 69 days last year.

The commission said Alejandro Bohn and Marcelo Kemeny were guilty of negligence, a charge they deny.

The investigation also concluded that the Chilean mine safety regulator bore some responsibility for failing to enforce its rules.

Workers said the mine lacked basic safety standards.

The commission unanimously found mine owners Alejandro Bohn and Marcelo Kemeny responsible for the collapse in August 2010, which cut off the miners at a depth of more than 700m (2,300ft).

Safety failings

Alejandro Garcia Huidobro, who lead the congressional commission, said Sernageomin, the state body tasked with regulating the industry, was "administratively responsible" for the accident.

The commission has handed Mining Minister Laurence Golborne suggestions on how Sernageomin could be improved....

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