Charbonnage Waterschei is an abandoned mine in Belgium.
In 1906 permission was granted for coal mining in an are of 2950 hectares. Due to the swamp like grounds it was not easy and no coal was actually excavated until 1924.
Coal mining is no walk in the park and an extremely dangerous process. In 1929 a gas explosion took the lives of 29 workers and caused multiple casualties. The fire was not easy to control and the next day took three members of the rescue team lost their lives after another explosion.
In 1949 the workforce was reaching nearly 7000 employees producing around 1 million tonnes a year. 1968 was a record year with production just shy of 1.5 million.
In 1983 records show that there was 1200 recorded injuries at the mine. The workforce was only 3600 at the time. Now to me that sounds like some extremely poor safety standards were in use.
Due to a decline in the need for coal the mine ceased operations in the late 1980's.
So you are possibly looking at these images thinking this doesn't look very much like a mine. No it doesn't sadly we were unable to access what remaining machinery is left. I have no idea what this building was actually used for but it certainly has some great features. I know it has undergone some restoration work and some events have been hosted here.
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