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miners 6 articles

Suicide Highest Among Construction Workers, Miners

Suicide rates increased dramatically among the U.S. working population between 2000 and 2016, with male construction workers and miners having the highest suicide rates by occupation in recent years, According to a new federal analysis of labor data. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), identifying suicide trends in labor data could help authorities better understand suicide among different occupational groups and inform suicide prevention efforts. The study looked at 22,000 U.S. workers ages 16 to 64 years who died by suicide in 17 states. The data showed that construction workers and miners had the highest ... Read More

Former Massey Energy CEO Off to Prison In Wake Of Deadly Mine Blast

Don Blankenship, the former CEO of Massey Energy, was sentenced to a year in federal prison and ordered to pay a $250,000 fine for conspiring to willfully violate mine health and safety standards, which contributed to the catastrophic 2010 Upper Big Branch coal mine explosion in West Virginia. Mr. Blankenship, an outspoken foe of safety, government regulations, and worker unions who often called some congressional leaders “greeniacs” and “crazy” for supporting environmental protections, received his sentence after a federal jury returned a guilty verdict on Dec. 3, 2015. During his trial, U.S. prosecutors called 27 witnesses to testify, many of whom were coal miners who worked ... Read More

Mining accidents killed 16 workers in first half Of 2015, U.S. safety officials report

U.S. mining accidents have killed 16 miners in the first half of 2015, federal safety officials reported last week in a mid-year summary of fatal accidents in both metal and non-metal mines. The current toll marks a decrease of five mining deaths from the same time in 2014, but the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is pushing to drive the numbers even lower, saying that all mining accidents are preventable if mining companies take the right measures before and during every operation. “Mining fatalities are preventable, and each of these deaths reminds us that much more needs to be ... Read More

Final settlements reached in WV mine explosion, criminal charges likely to follow

Alpha Natural Resources, the new owner of West Virginia’s Upper Big Branch Mine, has settled with the remaining families of the miners who were killed in an April 2010 explosion, believed to be the worst mining disaster in 40 years. The 13 families who hadn’t reached an agreement with Alpha or the mine’s previous owner, Massey Energy, accepted settlement offers after more than four days of talks with a mediator, according to the Charleston Gazette. The 16 other families either settled with Massey before the Alpha buyout or reached agreements with the new owner. Details of the latest settlements, including ... Read More

Massey Energy hires PR agency to revamp image after mining disaster

The board of Massey Energy, parent company and owner of Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia where 29 miners died in explosion earlier this month, is seeking a public relations boost from a Texas-based firm with political connections. Since the tragic explosion on April 5, Massey’s safety record has come to the public’s attention, revealing a systemic disregard for critical safety measures that could have prevented the disaster had they been followed. The incident has placed Massey Energy and its controversial CEO Don Blankenship under fire from all directions. On the outside, federal regulators, safety advocates, and victims’ families ... Read More

Poor safety record, bad leadership caused mining deaths

Massey Energy, owner of the Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia, where at least 25 miners were killed on Monday, has had a long record of serious safety violations, many of which portended Monday’s tragic explosion and subsequent collapse of the mining shaft. Massey is the nation’s fourth largest coal company and the largest coal producer in Central Appalachia, with bituminous coal mines in West Virginia, Kentucky, and Virginia. Despite the size and scope of its operations, however, Massey invests very little in protecting its workers. Between 2005 and Monday, the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) cited ... Read More