|01-03-2006, 11:10 PM||#1|
Never say Always
Join Date: Jan 2003
OT: Twelve Missing Coal Miners Found Alive
For those who haven't heard the news. Pretty amazing stuff.
|01-04-2006, 06:51 AM||#5|
Angling in the Deep
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Texas Riviera, Southern Mountains
This company is in deep over this. Reporting 12 survivors when there actually 12 deaths. To top it off...
"Since October, the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration has issued 50 citations to the Sago mine, some as recently as December 21, including citations for accumulation of combustible materials such as coal dust and loose coal."
Just one survivor at Virginia mine
By Jon Hurdle 46 minutes ago
TALLMANSVILLE, West Virginia (Reuters) - Only one man survived after an explosion in a West Virginia coal mine, a mine official said on Wednesday, transforming joy into grief and anger just hours after a mistaken report emerged that 12 of 13 missing miners were still alive 40 hours after the blast.
Ben Hatfield, president of mine owner International Coal Group Inc., blamed the earlier report on "miscommunication" and said that the company had then waited until it could determine which of the miners were dead or alive to tell the families their fate.
Anne Meredith, whose father died in the incident, said: "I feel that we were lied to all along," adding that she planned to sue ICG.
Virginia Dean, whose uncle was in the Sago mine in central West Virginia, reacted by saying, "Only one lived. They lied."
"The initial report from the rescue team to the command center indicated multiple survivors, but that information proved to be a miscommunication," Hatfield told a press conference.
He denied the company had confirmed the initial report, and said he did not want to assign blame to the rescue team.
Late on Tuesday night rescue workers located the 12, who had been trapped underground since 6:30 a.m. (1130 GMT) on Monday when the explosion had spread lethal gases in the mine.
The sole survivor, identified by Hatfield as Randal McCloy, was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital where staff physician Dr. Susan Long said he arrived unconscious and in critical condition. He was stabilized with a breathing tube and sent by ambulance to a bigger hospital, she said.
Earlier on Tuesday, Terry Helms, the first of the missing miners to be discovered, was found dead near the site of the explosion. The later discovery of an empty miner transport car further away gave rise to hopes the 12 other men had been deeper in the mine and had escaped to an area where they could avoid toxic gases.
The sadness and fury that greeted Hatfield's statement contrasted with earlier jubilation after a man burst into nearby Sago Baptist Church where family members were holding vigil, shouting: "It's a miracle, it's a miracle!" and saying that the 12 men had been found alive.
Bells rang at the church and cheers broke out when the announcement was made.
Any hope of finding the men alive had been tempered with caution because early tests found lethal levels of carbon monoxide in the tunnel where they were believed trapped. Each man carried only about one hour's worth of clean air, and there had been no communication with them since the explosion.
West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin said he had no idea how the miscommunication had occurred and would be conducting an enquiry to determine that. "I don't have the answers for that. I wish I did. I will," he told a news conference.
Manchin said that he was in the church talking to family members when he became of aware of rejoicing that 12 had survived. He denied that he or his staff had ever confirmed the report and said that he had begun receiving information that it was not accurate 20 minutes after the announcement. He said it had taken almost three hours to correct the mistake, because authorities did not want to get it wrong again.
"I can't tell you of anything more heart-wrenching that I have gone through in my life," he said.
There was no explanation for the explosion, which occurred in a recently closed section of the mine, which employs about 145 miners.
"We know that there had to be methane gas, or a buildup of fuel if you will, back there, and there had to be something that sparked it. And no one can speculate on ... what could have happened," Manchin said earlier.
The men had been trapped some 13,000 feet inside the mine.
The incident came four years after nine Pennsylvania coal miners were rescued following a 77-hour ordeal in a flooded mine shaft 240 feet under ground.
The explosion happened when the Sago mine was reopening after being closed for the holidays.
Since October, the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration has issued 50 citations to the Sago mine, some as recently as December 21, including citations for accumulation of combustible materials such as coal dust and loose coal.
The MSHA said in a statement early on Wednesday it would begin an in-depth investigation, including "how emergency information was relayed about the trapped miners' conditions."
The mine produces about 800,000 tons of coal annually.
(Additional reporting by Chriss Swaney in Pittsburgh, Claudia Parsons in New York, Adam Entous in Washington)
|01-04-2006, 03:28 PM||#6|
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: 'I guess he'd rather be in Colorado'
Man I really feel bad for those families. To go from such celebration last night to complete shock, grief and anger this morning is just unbelievable. God bless'em.