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Mining Fatality Update


According to Bell County Deputy Coroner Jason Steele on Monday, January 14, 2019 at approximately 12:05 PM the Bell County Coroner’s Office was contacted about a mining fatality in the Balkan Community, which is located approximately 13 miles from Pineville, Kentucky. 

Upon arrival at Tennco Energy’s Tom’s Fork Mine, Deputy Coroner’s Jason Steele and Andrew Harris made contact with federal and state mine safety officials. Early investigation into the Powered Haulage Accident, which occurred about 600 feet into the recently opened mine, indicate that mine engineer and surveyor Jeffery Norman Slone, 56 of Clinton, Tennessee was working for a contractor that had been hired to set Spads when he was struck by a shuttlecar at approximately 11:20 AM.

Deputy Coroner Steele pronounced Slone dead at the scene shortly after he was removed from the mine. 

An autopsy will be performed at the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Frankfort on Tuesday, as the investigation into the accident continues under the joint efforts of the Kentucky Division of Mine Safety, MSHA, and the Bell County Coroner’s Office. The Bell County Volunteer Fire Department, Bell County EMS and the Kentucky State Police also assisted at the scene. 

The Kentucky Division of Mine Safety and the Mine Safety and Health Administration is handling the investigation.

While the government shutdown has the agency working on a skeleton crew, one of the press secretaries has told WRIL that they will release more details as to the exact cause of the accident after the full investigation is complete.

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