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Survivors Found 5 Days After China Mine Collapse

People stand outside a gypsum mine after it collapsed on Friday morning, in Pingyi, Shandong province, Dec. 25, 2015.

Chinese rescue workers have made contact with eight survivors at a mine that collapsed five days ago in the eastern province of Shandong, according to state media.

Infrared cameras sent deep into the gypsum mine detected the survivors early Wednesday, according to state broadcaster CCTV, which said the workers are in stable condition.

Rescuers have sent food and other supplies to the workers, the report said. But the Xinhua news agency said rescue efforts are being complicated by "the structural instability of the tunnel and falling debris."

One person was killed and several more remain missing after the mine collapsed Friday in Pingyi county. Two days later, the owner of the mine jumped into a nearby well and drowned, in an apparent suicide.

Several local leaders in Pingyi county have already been fired, though state media say the cause of the mine collapse is still under investigation.

Mining-related accidents kill hundreds of people each year in China, though safety standards have improved in recent years.