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Coil Coal Company
Coil Mine Explosion

Madisonville, Hopkins County, Kentucky
April 21, 1912
No. Killed - 5

USBM Final Investigation Report  (1.1 Mb)  PDF Format

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(From Bureau of Mines Report, by E. B. Sutton)

The mine was opened by 2 shafts 290 feet deep, and because it was a new mine the workings were no more than 600 feet from the main shaft.  The mine was gassy and the fan at the bottom of the airshaft was shut down when no one was in the mine.  No work was done on that day but about 6:50 p.m. 5 men were lowered to load the coal that had been shot the night before.

At 7:05 p.m. the explosion severely damaged the mine and the shafts and killed the men.  One was blown out of the mine.  The foreman had started the fan but did not wait for the air to clear before starting to inspect the workings with an open light.

Five Men are Killed by Explosion of Gas
Atlanta Constitution, Georgia
April 22, 1912

Madisonville, Ky., April 21. -- Explosion of gas in the Coil Coal Company's mine at the edge of this city at 8:10 o'clock tonight set the mine on fire and probably caused the death of five men, including Joseph Hollowell, a mine foreman and four unidentified Negroes.

Flames are shooting up from the entry, where one of the cages was blown out by the explosion, and it is doubtful whether an effort to rescue the men can be made tonight.

The mine is a new one, about 200 feet below the surface and only about a half-mile long.  Only the five men were in the mine, and no hope is entertained that they are alive.

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