CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Safety violations and fines have been on the rise at an Alpha Natural Resources subsidiary where a West Virginia coal miner died over the weekend, according to U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration records.
Section foreman Jeremy Sigler, 34, of Pool, was killed when he was struck by material from the collapse of a wall at the company's Kingston No. 2 Mine, an underground mine in Fayette County.
The incident occurred at about 6:15 p.m. Saturday and is under investigation by MSHA and the state Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training. Sigler is the first West Virginia coal miner to die on the job in 2012.
It was the second fatal accident in the last 18 months at Alpha's Kingston Mining Inc. subsidiary, which operates two underground mines in the Scarbro area.
"In this sad time, our prayers and heartfelt condolences go to Mr. Sigler's family," said Kingston Mining President Charlie Bearse said in an Alpha news release.
"While the mine is idled, we will work closely with the outside investigators to determine how and why the accident occurred," Bearse said. "We are administering to his family's needs and providing counseling to his fellow miners at this time to help them deal with the loss of their co-worker."
Together, Kingston No. 1 and Kingston No. 2 employ about 200 workers and last year produced a little more than 1.1 million tons of coal.
Both operations were part of Abingdon, Va.-based Alpha before its purchase of Massey Energy in June 2011.