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Guard found dead at Kanawha coal mine identified

By Staff reports

Authorities have identified a security guard found dead at a coal mine in eastern Kanawha County on Friday, and they are continuing to investigate his death.

Tommy E. Reynolds, 58, of Powellton, was found by a co-worker face down on the bank of a sump pond early Friday morning, said Leslie Smithson, spokeswoman for the state Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training,. A sump pond generally collects wastewater.

Emergency crews responded around 5:30 a.m., but Reynolds was pronounced dead on the scene.

Reynolds was an employee of Allied Barton Security, a company hired by Law River coal company to provide security at its Crown Hill Dock mine in Hansford.

Smithson said that the Office of Miners’ Health is still investigating and it’s too early to say how Reynolds died.

“There’s no indication that it was because of any kind of mining activity or mining equipment,” Smithson said. “We’re not ready to say that it’s not a mining accident, but nothing fell on him.”

Smithson said that they are awaiting a report from the medical examiner. She said they are investigating with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department and the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.


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