CONCH - Communities Opposed to New Coal at Hunterston

> Mine Accidents

Mining inspector could have saved Pike River tragedy

A mining expert says the Pike River Coal tragedy could have been avoided, if New Zealand still used a mining inspector program it threw out years ago.
Dave Feickert said a chief inspector would have noticed dangerous levels of gases around the mine and evacuated the men prior to an explosion.
He says while safety officials do monitor mines around the country, the current system is inferior to the inspector program used until the late 90’s.
This wasn’t just one off, it was part of a whole pattern of gas problems they were having. But we do know enough about what had been going on in the months beforehand to know this was a distinct possibility.”

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In Colombia, King Coal is Dirty Business for Workers and the Environment

On the night of June 16, a methane gas explosion ripped through an underground coal mine near the town of Amagá, killing at least 72, making it the worst coal mine disaster since 1977, when 143 people died in the same town.

Neither of the two tragedies were isolated incidents. In 2009, nine people died in yet another Amagá coal mine disaster. A 2008 accident in Cucumbá took the lives of eight coal miners, while 32 perished from an explosion in February 2007, in the department of Norte de Santander. The list goes on.

Observers say Colombia’s many coal mines operate without sufficient government oversight. The recent Amagá is a case in point. The San Fernando mine, lacked proper gas-detection devices and adequate ventilation.
The safety short-comings are all the more galling given that two years ago, a flood at the same privately-owned mine killed eight.

Worse yet is that the problem is grossly underreported.
“For workers in these types of small and medium-sized mines, the situation is really quite critical.”
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Communities Opposed to New Coal at Hunterston

Serious accidents in coal mines 2013

Page updated: 22 Aug 2013

Archive: Coal Mine accidents in 2010, 2011, 2012 (archives)

a rare chance to see how adverse geological conditions affected a (relatively) modern longwall face. They were taken on 2nd May 1980 at Orgreave Colliery, near Sheffield, South Yorkshire.

We were unwilling to support injuries and death to coal miners who would have supplied the coal to the proposed power station.

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Mining accidents

Mining accidents can have a variety of causes, including leaks of poisonous gases such as hydrogen sulphide or explosive natural gases, especially firedamp ( methane), dust explosions, collapsing of mine stopes, mining-induced seismicity, flooding, or general mechanical errors from improperly used or malfunctioning mining equipment (such as safety lamps or electrical equipment). Use of improper explosives underground can also trigger methane and coal dust explosions.


August 10, 2013
Orissa/Odisha, India

A landslide in a coal mine in Sundergarh district of Odisha today killed at least seven people and injured two others. According to local media reports, at least 20 more are missing.

The incident took place when some people from nearby villages were collecting coal from the "over-burdened" dump yard located near the mining area. Over burden (OB)means the extraction is done by blasting away the top soil for excavation of coal.

Seven dead in landslide in Odisha coal mine

6th August 2013
Kentucky, USA

One miner died and two others were injured Tuesday in an underground coal mine in Harlan County, having become trapped during 'retreat mining operations'.

"Preliminary reports indicate the side of a coal pillar burst as the continuous-miner machine was operating, causing the miners to be trapped," the news release stated.

The Huff Creek mine was cited three times in July and once in May for roof control plan violations, according to data from the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration.

One coal miner killed, two injured in Harlan County accident


12th July 2013
Jillig province, China

An official investigation by China’s State Council has revealed that a coal mine in the north-eastern province of Jilin had routinely covered up workplace accidents and deaths over the last two years. The investigation was triggered by two massive gas explosions within the space of three days this year at the Babao Coal Mine, owned by the Tonghua Mining Group.

The first explosion on 29 March killed 36 miners but the company only reported 28 deaths and 13 injuries in an attempt to avoid a high-level investigation.

On 1 April, a second explosion at the Babao Mine killed 17 workers and injured eight others. The workers had been ordered down into the mine in an attempt to repair the gas leak in spite of a government ban on all mine operations.

The State Council investigation further revealed that the mine had also covered-up the deaths of six workers in five other accidents in 2012, and that three gas explosions that occurred in 2013 prior to the 29 March tragedy were not reported at all.

Coal mine found to have concealed numerous deaths and accidents

11th May 2013
Sichuan province, China

The number of people killed in a coal mine accident in Taozigou coal mine has climbed to 28, following a gas explosion due to high gas density due to poor ventilation.

An initial investigation indicated that unauthorized mining was undertaken at the mine.

Work safety authorities have ordered the suspension of operations in all coal mines in the province while an overhaul takes place.

Death toll rises in Sichuan coal mine explosion

12th March 2013
Guizhou Province, China

At least 21 miners have been killed and another four are missing after an explosion at a coal mine in Shuicheng county, Guizhou Province, south west China. There were 83 miners working in the mine when a blast ripped through tunnels underground. Rescue attempts are continuing and 58 men have been able to escape.

Chinese Coal Mine Explosion Kills At Least 21
18 officials punished over SW China coal mine accidents

11th February 2013
Koni, Russia

The death toll in the gas blast at a coal mine in Russia’s northern republic of Komi has risen to 18. 26 miners were working in the section of the mine where methane exploded at a depth of 800m.

Russian Coal Mine Blast Death Toll Rises to 18

12 January 2013
Liaoning province, China

Eight people died and three others were injured in a coal mine accident in the Wulong Coal Mine in the city of Fuxin, Northeast China's Liaoning province,

8 dead in NE China mine accident

8 January 2013
Zonguldak, Turkey

Eight mine workers were killed due to a methane leak at a coal mine in the Black Sea province of Zonguldak, Turkey’s coal capital. The blast came amid efforts to increase safety in coal mines. Work safety has been a high-level priority for years following past firedamp explosions and industrial accidents,

Turkey has the worst safety record in terms of mining accidents and explosions in Europe and the third worst in the world, according to reports. A total of 2,554 miners were killed and more than 13,000 lost the ability to work between 1991 and 2008.

Mine Explosion Kills at least Eight in Zonguldak

7th January 2013
Shanxi Province, China

Seven workers died in a gas explosion the Sijiazhuang Coal Mine in Xiyang County north China's Shanxi Province. The mine has a designed capacity of 5 million tonnes.

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

7 dead in N China coal mine blast

3rd January, 2013
Gansu Province, China

A government official in Gansu province has been suspended, after a coal mine accident that killed four people and wounded five on Jan 3

Official suspended after coal mine accident in NW China

Link to info about next meeting

“While mining employs c1% of the global labour force,
it generates 8% of fatal accidents.”

Barack Obama
Image CC jmt images

“How can we let anyone in this country put their lives at risk by simply showing up to work – by simply pursuing the American dream?”
US President Barack Obama, at the memorial service for the miners killed at Big Branch, Texas

US Mining deaths rise in 2010

Mining fatalities in the United States significantly increased in 2010, following a year marked by the fewest deaths in mining history, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration.
71 miners died on the job last year, compared to 34 in 2009. 48 of those deaths occurred in coal mines.
The leading cause of coal mining deaths was ignition or explosion, followed by powered haulage and roof falls.
US Dept of Labor

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