5 killed in Kentucky coal mine explosion

Saturday, May 20, 2006

An explosion in a coal mine in eastern Kentucky, located in the United States, killed 5 miners. One miner was able to walk out of the mine. The explosion occurred at Darby Mine No. 1, owned by Kentucky Darby LLC and located in Harlan County. Federal Mine Safety officials say the explosion happened sometime between midnight and 1 a.m. local time Saturday.

According to Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher, they "don't know the details of the cause," of the explosion.

The miners were part of a maintenance crew that was on duty during the time of the explosion. It is not known how many miners were inside the mine when the explosion happened; however, no mining was in progress when the explosion occurred.

Rescue crews are on scene. The names of the miners are not known.

The law issues have been actualized since 14 coal miners been killed in West Virginia in two accidents last January. A Senate committee endorsed bill would make coal mining safer by requiring miners to have at least two hours of oxygen available instead of one. Mine operators would also be required to keep extra oxygen packs accessible along escape ways in the mine. A temporary rule by the Mine Safety and Health Administration requiring coal operators to give miners extra oxygen was earlier issued but miners pressed Congress for a permanent legislation.

MSHA Publishes Emergency Temporary Standard on Mine Evacuation