Coal Tattoo

Upper Big Branch ‘foreman’ used forged license

We broke a story in the Sunday Gazette-Mail about how a worker at Massey Energy’s Upper Big Branch somehow managed to use a forged foreman’s license for nearly two years — and conduct more than 220 safety examinations at the mine between January 2008 and August 2009.

The story is posted here. And this morning, we’ve also added to our Web site documents we obtained under the Freedom of Information Act that detail a bit about the case of Massey worker Thomas Harrah.

And we’re also posting the audio of the hearing in which Harrah testifies about his actions:

It’s worth remembering that this is not the first story to come out about questions about mine foremen at Upper Big Branch. We published a story in late September about three Upper Big Branch mine managers who were cited individually by state inspectors for alleged safety violations.

Stay tuned …