"Explosives" blew up at the bottom of the shaft at the mine in Luliang in the coal-rich Shanxi province, Xinhua said, citing local officials.
China's coal mining industry is the deadliest in the world, as mine owners push production beyond safety limits in the face of robust demand and soaring profits amid an economic boom.
A total of 3,786 Chinese coal miners died in gas blasts, flooding and other accidents in 2007, down 20 percent from 2006.
Also on Friday, a landslide on a mountain in Luliang buried more than 10 workers at a rural brick factory, killing at least seven, Xinhua said.
Last Mod: 13 Haziran 2008, 16:55