Four survivors were in critical condition, Dincer told journalists after visiting the hospital where the miners were treated.

Seventeen workers were killed in the same mine in a similar blast in June 2006, the Anatolia said. The mine is 20km from the centre of Dursunbey.

In December, a similar accident killed 19 miners in Bursa.

Safety violations and outdated equipment have been factors in past mine accidents in the country.