Mine workers in Chiatura pictured during the strike in November, 2012. (DFWatch.)

TBILISI, DFWatch–Two mine workers have drowned in a mine in Chiatura as result of an accident as water flowed up while they were drilling in an old mine.

Roland Nozadze, 51, shift leader, and Iuza Samkharadze, 49, worker, died as result of an accident. Two other workers survived the accident.

Representatives of the miners’ trade union say the Itkhvisi Mine was closed and reopened for second processing. During drilling and blasting, water flowed up and flooded the mine.

All the mines in Chiatura are owned by Georgian Manganese. Workers there were on strike in October and November, 2012, demanding an end to their slave-like conditions.

Tamaz Dolaberidze, head of the Metallurgy and Miners Trade Union, told Netgazeti that the company’s management is responsible for the accident.

He says geologists should have studied the area before workers started work in the mine.

“In any case, it just needed minimal work to define whether there was water or not. This indicates negligence by the administration,” he added.

An investigation has been launched, while the bodies were moved to Kutaisi, the second largest city after the capital.

Last month, Shalva Darbaidze, also a mine worker, died in an explosion in Chiatura.