John A. Mura, Director of Communications, Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet, issued a press release on March 25 regarding a fatal coal mining accident in Harlan County.
Mura said a 48-year-old miner was killed Friday in an accident at the Huff Creek No. 1 mine in Holmes Mill, of Harlan County.
“Mark Frazier, of Line Fork, a continuous miner operator, with more than 14 years of experience at the mine, was struck by falling material as he was performing mine maintenance work,” Mura said. “The mine was not in production today. The accident occurred at 8:15 a.m.”
Mura said the mine is operated by Lone Mountain Processing Inc., a subsidiary of Arch Coal Inc. The Kentucky Department for Natural Resources, Division of Mine Safety, responded by sending its lead investigator and two specialists to the scene.
“I would like to offer my sincerest condolences to the Frazier family,” Kentucky Energy and Environment Secretary Charles G. Snavely said. “It’s a very sad time when any coal miner gets killed in the state of Kentucky.”
Harlan County Deputy Coroner Jim Rich responded to the scene after he was dispatched regarding the fatality.
According to a statement from Amy Louviere, with the Mine Safety and Health Administration, “A fatal accident occurred. This mine is…inspected out of the Harlan Field Office. A worker was fatally injured by a rib roll.”
Louviere said mine inspectors were en route to the scene to conduct an investigation.
This is the second known mining fatality in Kentucky this year. The first one was reported in Western Kentucky.
Nathan G. Phillips, 36, of Hopkins County died in January in Western Kentucky.
Officials said Phillips was operating mining equipment when he was pinned between the machine and the wall. The Dotiki Mine is located in Webster County.
There were two deaths recorded in 2015.
Reach Debbie Caldwell at 606.573.4510 or on Twitter @raiders42