January 04, 2006
Twelve of the thirteen miners trapped in a coal mine after an explosion in West Virginia, were found dead early Wednesday. One miner remains in critical condition.
The bodies were found about 700 feet from a mine car, and it appeared an employee was working on a beltline, which brings coal out of the mine, said Ben Hatfield, chief executive officer for the mine's owner, International Coal Group Inc.
Some type of blast, believed to be caused by combustion, caused the 13 miners to become entrapped early Monday morning. Several of their crew members tried to go back to rescue them, but fumes were too strong.
The drill used to reach the enclosed mine area, that is nearly 2 miles long and 260 feet from ground level, is the same drill used in rescuing the 9 men in trapped in Quecreek (Pennsylvania) in July 2002.