Pete walked around the end of the joined tables and stood directly in front of me. “Do you have anything to add or delete from your account of the incidents the day Charles Wagner died before this all becomes official?”
Since the beginning of coal mining, the mining industry has suffered from many devastating underground mining fatalities.
Twelve miners died in West Virginia at the Sago Mine in 2006 as they waited to be rescued.
In the next year in Utah at Crandall Canyon, six men were trapped and their bodies never recovered.
In these cases and others, rescuers had no way to pinpoint exactly where trapped miners were located. The industry had rushed to discover a technique to monitor the whereabouts of miners deep inside the earth at all times should a disaster happen. Finally technology had caught up with need.
Miners at Blue Mountain were required to keep tracking tags with them at all times. Surface security could locate anyone underground at any time except for a few isolated remote areas of the mine. When entering remote areas, miners were instructed to contact security and
inform them of their intentions to enter areas not monitored.
The conveyor belt where Charlie perished was in a location easily monitored by security. Knowing this I asked, “Has anyone checked the tracking devices, like the one attached to my hard hat? You want to know if I am telling the truth, check the records. Is it too late to access the tracking records to see if Jennifer was there at the same time I was?”
Pete Romoski turned and walked back to his seat. After he was seated, he spoke, “We did check. Jennifer Johnson did not register anywhere underground that day. She left her tracking tag and radio outside in her locker. We have already written a violation stating this.”
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