CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Federal investigators have cited a CONSOL Energy subsidiary in the February death of a worker at the company's Loveridge Mine in Marion County.
The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration cited CONSOL's Consolidation Coal Co. in the death of Glen L. Clutter Jr., 51, of Baxter. Clutter received severe head trauma when a metal bar he was using to help put a loaded supply car back on the mine's underground track system kicked out of place and hit him in the head.
In a 17-page report made public Friday, MSHA investigators said the incident occurred because the supply car was not secured or blocked against motion before it was lifted. MSHA's team also said that the company failed to maintain the underground track system or perform an adequate pre-shift safety check of the area.
MSHA cited the company for not giving workers adequate task training in the use of air bags to lift cars back onto the track or blocking movement when re-railing track-mounted equipment.
"This mine has had one fatal and one permanent disability injury in the recent past from shifting/falling equipment while being re-railed," the MSHA report said.
Federal investigators said that the company did not maintain the track in condition to prevent the derailment, and did not perform adequate examinations of the track.
"This could have prevented the derailment because the track deficiencies would have been repaired," the MSHA report said.
CONSOL did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the MSHA report.
In a speech given less than a month after Clutter's death, CONSOL President Nicholas DeIuliis said the nation's mine operators must make zero fatalities and injuries their goal.
"We can't be satisfied with just incremental improvements," DeIuliis said during a speech to the West Virginia Coal Association's 40th Annual Mining Symposium in Charleston in early March. "The only acceptable result for everyone in the industry and everyone in the room should be zero fatalities and zero injuries."
Reach Ken Ward Jr. at kw...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1702.