|Successful Mine Rescues in May|
||West Pittston Colliery Fire, West Pittston, Pennsylvania — The anticipation was palpable as rescuers worked through the night and into the next day. At 12:30 a.m. (10 hours later) they brought Andrew Morgan to the surface in an unconscious state. Learning that more miners had barricaded, they sent out for more men and tools. Up to 22 hours after the fire was first discovered, around twenty more miners, not more than alive were brought out. Only one or two recovered enough to give an account of themselves. It is not known how many of those rescued survived.
||Wadesville Colliery Mine Fire, Wadesville, Pennsylvania — Men working in other parts of the mine knew that something terrible had happened, and rushed to learn the fate of their comrades. They found seven miners so terribly burned and bruised that one of them died in a short time. James Libby was brought out alive, but died in a few hours. He was fearfully burned.
||Three badly injured miners: Anthony Froyne; fire boss John Allen; and Robert W. Roberts were rescued from the Jersey No. 8 mine of the Lehigh and Wilkes-Barre Coal Company following a cave-in and explosion. Their entrapment ranged from 9 to 14 hours. Sadly, all three men died from their extensive injuries after their rescue. Ironically, it was asserted that John Allen’s lamp caused the explosion. Had he not done so, all could have been rescued alive, as there was a current of air going through the chamber where the men had taken refuge, after the cave-in had taken place. See more.
||Cumnock Mine Explosion, Cumnock, North Carolina — The accident was in what was known as the east heading. Between forty and fifty men were in the mine at the time. Five were brought out alive from the east heading after an undisclosed period, while none of the men in the other parts of the mine were injured.
||Seven miners were rescued after 100 hours in the flooded Mine No. 38 of the Berwind-White Operations at Foustwell (near Johnstown), Pennsylvania. Their rescue was made possible by the bravery of Stiney Rodon and Charles Ream who located the men by swimming 50 feet through a water-filled heading. Earlier, four others made a similar attempt, but were unsuccessful and returned half-drowned. Mike Bolya, a mine contractor, took charge of the group of trapped men and led them to the highest point in the heading where they waited for rescuers. Source document. |
||Norrie Mine, Oliver Iron Mining Company, Ironwood, Michigan - A party of 10 miners and 3 trammers on the night shift was walking home from the boundary of the property above the twentieth level of the mine. Hearing ground dropping, they retreated to what they thought was a safe place, the main drift, which was securely timbered and had 35 to 40 feet of solid ore above it. The cave, however, did not occur at the place where the men had been working, but in the very place of refuse to which they had retreated, crushing in the drift timbers over a length of about 80 feet. Six men were rescued alive after about 24 hours, but one died about a week later. In all, 7 miners were killed. See more.|
||Imperial Mine Explosion, Belle Valley, Ohio — After an undisclosed period, rescuers found Roy Yeager about 300 feet from the scene of the explosion. Yeager, who was alive, was unable to rise on account of a broken leg, and he probably owes his life to the broken leg. Lying on the floor, he did not inhale the fumes of the afterdamp. The rescue party carried him to a mine car and started toward the entrance.|
||After almost 10 hours of tunneling, Andrew Coshosky, trapped under a fall of slate in the Old Colony Mine, Ligonier, Pennsylvania, was rescued and expected to recover. Covered to a depth of 30 feet, the only way to reach him was to drive a tunnel under the fallen mass of rock. Source document.
|| Delagua No. 3 Mine Explosion, Delagua, Colorado — One hundred and thirty two men were in the Delagua No. 3 mine at the time of the blast and all with the exception of the dead and one injured man reached the surface safely through air shafts. John Walker, 62, was seriously injured and was brought out of the mine four hours after the explosion.
||Frank Bucsha was found alive and said to be in good condition after he was found 55 hours following the Mather Mine explosion in Mather, Pennsylvania on May 19, 1928. 195 miners were killed in the blast of the mine owned by Pickands-Mather and Company. Another miner, John Wade, was rescued from the same mine after 147 hours. Mine officials said he must have been wandering around in the mine and was missed by the rescuers. Source document.
||Rescuers worked for 15 hours to free sixty year old Joseph Babatsky after a fall of clay in a "bootleg" anthracite coal mine near Shenandoah in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. Thirty rescuers began the work shortly after the fall and as they neared him, he instructed them how to proceed. Source document. |
|Robert Galligan was rescued from a "bootleg" anthracite mine near Shenandoah, Pennsylvania after a cave-in trapped him in the mine for 65 hours. During the rescue, he was heard joking and singing. Source document.
||NuRex Mine Explosion, LaFollette, Tennessee — Eighteen coal miners, huddling behind a hastily erected canvas barrier nearly 2,000 feet underground, survived an explosion that rocked the Etna Coal and Coke Company mine and suffocated ten of their companions. The miners, fighting against the deadly fumes of "black damp" for more than eight hours, stumbled and crawled from their barricaded cell as rescue parties freed them.
||Bootleg Anthracite Mine Inundation, Shamokin, Pennsylvania Edward Heck and Peter Gorton were rescued from a bootleg Anthracite mine near Shamokin, Pennsylvania following their 60-hour entrapment from an inundation of water from an adjoining abandoned mine. The men said they believed their companion, Charles Bashore, was trapped in the lowest part of the mine and had no chance to escape.
||50-year-old, Cantrell Owens, was rescued from an abandoned Kentucky coal mine near Harlan after spending more than 2 days lost in mine. Rescuers had to give up the search once because of the foul air they encountered. Source document.
||24 miners, trapped for more than 15 hours, were rescued from a flooded Boone County Coal Corporation mine in Logan, West Virginia. There were no deaths reported in this accident. Source document.
|| Wharton No. 2 Mine Roof Fall, West Virginia — Resulting from a roof fall in the Wharton No. 2 mine, one employee was rescued after being pinned against an air compressor for 5 hours. Four miners were killed in the accident.
||Inundation of water at the Saxsewell No. 8 Mine in Hominy Falls, WV. Fifteen men were rescued 5 days later and six others were rescued 10 days after the inundation occurred. Source document.
||Two men, Tom Wilkinson and Ronald Flory, were rescued and found to be in good condition after being trapped for 8 days following the Sunshine silver mine fire in Kellogg, Shoshone County, Idaho. 91 miners were killed in the disaster. The four men responsible for the rescue were Wayne D. Kanack, Frank J. Delimba, and Don Morris from the U. S. Bureau of Mines, and Sonny Becker, a Sunshine miner. Source document.
||Magma Mine Cave-in, Superior, Arizona — Three miners died between 5:30 and 6 p.m., on May 10, 1982 in three separate incidents that involved a cave-in and fall-of-ground in the Magma Copper Mine in Superior, Arizona. During a daring rescue and recovery which lasted through May 12th, one of the victims was recovered from the dangerous area, however, he died shortly thereafter from his injuries. Joseph Granillo was also entrapped in the same manner, and while his rescue was being attempted, both he and his would-be rescuer, Joseph Cassaro, were killed when additional material fell. For their brave efforts, the Carnegie Hero Award was bestowed upon Frank Aldecoa, Andy J. Arroyos, Jr., Billy Ray Evans, Henry Lopez Rodriguez, George Anthony Gomez, G. Michael Martinez (posthumously), and Joseph Cassaro (posthumously). Source document.
||Abandoned Mine Rescue, Kern County, California — While riding his dirt bike in a remote part of Kern County, California, a 10-year-old boy fell 200 feet into an abandoned mine shaft. In a rescue which lasted several hours and was executed by the Indian Wells Valley Mine Rescue Team and the Kern County Fire Department, the boy and his rescuer, Sean Halpin, were raised to the surface. The victim was transported to a nearby hospital, where he was kept 24 hours for observation and then released.
||Darby No. 1 Mine Explosion, Holmes Mill, Kentucky — Paul Ledford, roof bolter, was rescued after more than 2 hours following the explosion. Ledford had traveled approximately 1,050 feet in the No. 5 Entry where he collapsed and lost consciousness. He regained consciousness at approximately 3:05 a.m. and crawled into the No. 6 Entry, where he was discovered by rescuers. He was then taken out of the mine on a battery-powered personnel carrier and transported to Lonesome Pine Hospital in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, where he was treated.