Mine Explosion In West Virginia Kills 25 Or More
Rescuers will work to release dangerous methane gas today before resuming their search for missing West Virginia coal miners. An underground explosion killed 25 of their co-workers in what is described as America’s worst mine disaster since 1984.
The search was called off overnight due to rising methane gas levels in the mine, which increases the risk of another explosion. At a news conference this morning it was said that three holes will be bored into the earth to allow toxic gases to escape. The air will be tested to make sure it is safe to enter.
West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III reported on NBC’s “Today” show it would take at least 12 hours.
The atmosphere is very tense with only 11 of the 25 miners killed being identified. The families were encouraged to do what they do best. Love one another and come together as a family.
The giant explosion happened Monday around 3 p.m. This mine has a history of safety violations.
The blast was felt by miner Steve Smith while he was working underground about seven miles away. Immediately his ears stopped up and he could not hear. He said they hurried to get outside as quickly as possible.
As of last night no survivors were found. There are airtight chambers underground stocked with food, water and enough oxygen for them to survive four days. One of the two chambers was empty. The search had to be called off before reaching the second chamber.
They are continuing to hope in the mist of a dark situation.