Fatalities Occurring at Underground Coal Mine Disasters Since 1980
Date Company and Mine State/City No. Killed Primary Cause Brief Description
Ziegler Coal Co.
Spartan Mine IL, Sparta 3
Roof Fall Three miners were fatally injured when the roof suddenly collapsed in the no. 2 south entry. Sub-normal roof conditions were being experienced immediately prior to the collapse.
Frank Crawford Coal Co.
No. 1 Mine KY, Woodbine 3
Detonation of Explosives One man, a scoop operator was killed following the detonation of explosives in the crosscut right of the no. 2 entry. Two other workmen, in search of the first man succumbed to noxious gases from the detonation.
Westmoreland Coal Co.
Ferrell No. 17 WV, Uneeda 5
Methane Explosion A methane explosion occurred in the 1 east 2 south section as a result of inadequate ventilation controls in the section.
Mid-Continent Resources, Inc.
Dutch Creek No. 1 CO, Redstone 15
Methane Explosion An outburst occurred at the face of the no. 1 entry that released large amounts of methane and coal dust which was ignited by the continuous mining machine not maintained in a permissible condition.
Grays Knob Coal Co
.No. 5 Mine KY, Grays Knob 3
Inundation The section of the no. 5 mine had been permeated by a sudden inrush of blackdamp when the continuous mining machine unintentionally penetrated the abandoned adjacent no. 1 mine.
Elk River Sewell Coal Co.
Stillhouse Run No. 1 WV, Bergoo 3
Roof Fall While repositioning the roof bolting machine to the left side of the left crosscut in the no. 2 entry, the roof suddenly collapsed. One additional miner suffered serious injury.
Adkins Coal Co.
No. 11 Mine KY, Kite 8
Coal Dust Explosion A coal dust explosion occurred when a blown-out shot from the right corner blasthole that had been put into suspension by blasts at this face.
Grundy Mining Co.
No. 21 Mine TN, Whitewell 13
Methane Explosion An explosion occurred in the 003 section when methane accumulations in the gob off 5 Right flowed through a test borehole of the no. 2 and 3 entries of the 003 section.
RFH Coal Co.No. 1
Mine KY, Craynor 7
Coal Dust Explosion A coal dust explosion occurred in the 001 section when explosives were detonated in the developing crosscut between the nos. 5 and 6 rooms.
Island Creek Coal Co.
VA Pocahontas Mine VA, Oakwood 3
Fall of Material An improperly repaired refuse bin suddenly tipped and dropped vertically crushing 3 workmen.
Clinchfield Coal Co.
VA, McClure 7
Methane Explosion An explosion occurred in the 2 left entries caused by an insufficient volume and velocity of air.
Helen Mining Co.
Homer City Mine PA, Homer City 1
Methane Explosion While examining the mine following a power interruption and fan stoppage, an explosive methane-air mixture was ignited by the arcing of the controller on a vehicle approximately 500 ft. from the face.
Penna. Mines Corp.
Greenwich Collieries No. 1 Mine PA, Green Township 3
Methane Explosion An accumulation of water in the longwall gob areas and bleeder entries allowed for the buildup of methane which was ignited by the electrical arcing of a battery-powered locomotive.
Bon Trucking Co.
Berger No. 2 Mine KY, Evarts 4
Roof Fall While repairing a bridge conveyor, a large portion of roof fell covering the conveyor and a portion of the mining machine.
Emery Mining Corp.
Wilberg Mine UT, Orangeville 27
Mine Fire A fire in the intake of the 5th Right longwall quickly engulfed and cut of the escape route of 27 persons. The fire source was determined to be a compressor at crosscut 36. One miner escaped.
R & R Coal Co.No. 3
Mine KY, Woodbine 3
CO Poisoning Loading and hauling coal after a shot throughout the afternoon, a miner was overcome by CO when his scoop became stuck in the face area. Two others attempting to save the fallen miner were also overcome.
M.S.W. Coal Co.
No. 2 Slope PA, Carlstown 3
Methane Explosion A methane-air mixture was ignited by the detonation of explosives in the No. 2 slope.
Consolidation Coal Co.
Loveridge No. 22 Mine WV, Fairview 5
Fall of Person A sudden collapse of material over a raw coal storage bin engulfed and suffocated 5 of 7 persons examining same.
Freeman United Coal Co.
Orient No. 6 Mine IL, Waltonville 3
Roof Fall While cutting down roof for an overcast with a continuous miner, the roof suddenly collapsed killing 3 foremen watching the work from the entry. The miner operator escaped the fall.
Cumberland Valley Contractors
CV-2 Mine KY, Middlesboro 3
Roof Fall As final cuts were being made to the No. 4 pillar, a sudden roof fall occurred killing 3 miners.
Pyro Mining Co.
William Station Mine KY, Sullivan 10
Methane Explosion An explosion occurred on longwall panel "O" between the 4th and 5th West entries off the first Main North entry. Insufficient volume and velocity of air allowed the buildup of methane.
Granny Rose Coal Co.
No. 3 Mine KY, Barbourville 3
Detonation of Explosives Explosives, detonators, and miners were directly aligned with explosive forces from the production blasting conducted in the right crosscut of the No. 1 entry. These forces penetrated the coal pillar, and detonated unused explosives located near the victims.
J & T Coal, Inc.
No. 1 Mine VA, St. Charles 4
Roof Fall A massive roof fall occurred in the line of the last open crosscuts between the No. 1 and No. 3 entries.
Consolidation Coal Co.
Blacksville No. 1 Mine WV, Blacksville 4
Methane Explosion During installation of a 16 in. casing through an opening in the cap covering the production shaft, a methane-air mixture was ignited by sparks produced by arc welding.
Southmountain Coal Co
.No. 3 Mine VA, Norton 8
Methane Explosion MSHA investigators concluded that an open flame from a cigarette lighter found on the mine floor was the ignition source.
RAG American Coal Holdings, Inc.
Willow Creek Mine Helper, Utah 2
Methane Explosion The blast is thought to have been triggered after a controlled roof collapse created sparks that started a fire and touched off a pocket of methane. A dozen miners were injured in the blast.
Jim Walter Resources
No. 5 Mine AL, Brookwood 13
Methane Explosion A roof fall occurred in an intersection next to a battery charging station. The battery charging station and possibly the adjacent permanent stopping were compromised by the roof fall. A short time after the roof fall, an explosion occurred injuring several miners. Some time later, a secondary explosion occurred which resulted in 13 fatalities.
McElroy Mining Company
Contractor: Central Cambria Drilling WV, Cameron 3
Methane Explosion Methane ignited and exploded in an air shaft under construction while contract workers were installing a door approximately 940 feet from the surface.
International Mines Corp.
Sago Mine WV, Tallmansville 12
Methane Explosion Methane, possibly ignited by lightning in a sealed area exploded. Of the 12 miners that barricaded themselves, only 1 survived after 41 hours.
Massey EnergyAracoma Mining Co.
Alma Mine No. 1 WV, Melville 2
Mine Fire A fire broke out around 5:45 p.m. 10 members of a 12-man crew escaped that portion of the mine at Melville and joined with another mine crew to leave the mine. Two miners, unable to escape were found dead at 4:30 p.m. on January 21.
Kentucky Darby LLC
Darby Mine No. 1 KY, Holmes Mill 5
Methane Explosion Methane gas exploded shortly after midnight during a maintenance shift at the Kentucky Darby Mine No. 1 in southeastern Kentucky. Five were killed, one survived the blast and made his way to the surface.