Report: Utah Mine Collapse Was Avoidable

Company, feds faulted for ignoring 'red flags' about tenuous section
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted May 8, 2008 1:02 PM CDT
Report: Utah Mine Collapse Was Avoidable
Karen Jobe Templeton sculpts the face of Dale Black for part of a bronze memorial of the miners and rescuers who were killed in the Crandall Canyon Mine collapse.   (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)

Mining officials concealed information that could have prevented the deaths of nine miners in Utah last year, says a congressional report out today. The August disaster followed the collapse of a nearby section of the mine, which indicated that the terrain was unsafe—but officials at the Crandall Mine didn’t report the earlier incident to federal safety authorities, the New York Times reports.

“Even after the near-disaster in March, the company forged ahead,” said the head of the committee studying the case. Further, a federal organization had clearly noted that the area was dangerous, the report found. The committee has asked the Justice Department to assess whether the mine's manager and others intentionally hid the earlier collapse. (More Crandall Canyon Mine stories.)

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