Coal Tattoo

Breaking news: Miner killed in W.Va.

The Associated Press is reporting that a coal miner was killed today at a strip mine in West Virginia. We’ve got the AP story on our Web site. 

State officials have identified the miner killed as William Wade, 70, of Bloomingrose. Wade was an employee of Medford Trucking.

Here’s the report I just got in from Amy Louviere at the Mine Safety and Health Administration:

A fatal accident occurred around 9:00 am today in District 4 at the Republic Energy mine. Preliminary information indicates that a contractor operating a coal truck lost control of the truck while traveling down grade on a paved haul road.  An eyewitness saw the truck travel a short distance up an embankment and then flip over.  The driver was ejected from the truck and was fatally injured when he was pinned under the cab.  The victim expired around 12:50 pm after efforts began to rescue him from his trapped position.

Republic Energy is listed as a subsidiary of Richmond, Va.-based Massey Energy.

As I have written before, these kinds of trucking accidents at large strip mines are far too common, and are often very preventable.

We’ll have more on this death in Saturday’s print and online editions of the Saturday-Gazette-Mail.