Firefighters fight flames at Poland’s largest lignite mine


Warsaw, Poland (AP) — Firefighters in central Poland say 13 units are fighting a flame that swallowed a conveyor belt at Poland’s largest lignite mine in Berchato.

The fire broke out at noon on Saturday, sending a huge cloud of black smoke to the area, including Poland’s largest lignite power plant.

Jedrzej Pawlak, a spokesman for firefighters in the Lodz area, said there were no reports of casualties. He said the fire was extinguished but not extinguished.

A nearby power plant that was hit by an automatic shutdown in another incident on Monday was unaffected.

The fire broke out the day after the European Union’s Supreme Court ordered Poland to immediately shut down operations at another lignite mine in Turow on the Czech-German border, which belongs to the same state energy company PGE.

Coal accounts for 65% of Poland’s energy source, 17% of which is lignite.

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