Dead miners' families being preyed upon
I cannot fully describe my revulsion at the half-page ads by the "Underwood Law Offices" preying upon the grief and emotions of the deceased miners' families. I am thoroughly disgusted at this blatant attempt to capitalize on the losses just days after the Upper Big Branch mine disaster. I am ashamed that fellow bar members would undertake such sleaziness. It's just another example of why lawyers such as these are known as bottom feeders.
Why were 29 working in such conditions?
I have paid very close attention to the recent mine tragedy that took the lives of 29 miners. For the life of me I can't figure out why miners were allowed to work when the air was going the wrong way. Someone in the past 20 years must have surely weakened the 1969 Coal Mine Health and Safety Act.
I worked in a gassy mine at Dehue, W.Va., in the 1970s and we had several ignitions, but luckily no explosions. Believe me when I tell you that it was never caused by the air going the wrong way. That was against the law then, and I would think, now. I was very surprised to learn that these miners were allowed to work under those conditions.
During my mining career I was employed as a safety inspector for the United Mine Workers and this is where I met and worked with Joe Main who has risen to the top spot in MSHA. Joe was a very good safety expert then and is a much more experienced one now. If given time, Joe will change things in MSHA for the better. However, he will never be able to protect miners as well as the United Mine Workers protected us. At our mine, we would have refused to work under those conditions, and if Massey had fired us, the union was there to make sure we got our jobs back.
Thinking back, it is very disturbing to remember those politicians who have screamed for years on how the coal industry had too many regulations. It was more disturbing to turn on my TV and see those who have always supported less regulation for the industry speaking with remorse, but no shame.
Danny R. Wells
Don't let mining destroy state's beauty