Your Amazon purchases made using this link will benefit the United States Mine Rescue Association


Mine Safety Training Repository
united states mine rescue association
Mine Disasters in the United States


Women Killed in Mine Accidents

J. M. Huber Corporation
Midwest Controlled Storage Mine Roof Fall

Quincy, Adams County, Illinois
October 23, 2003
No. Killed 1



Missouri woman killed in mine collapse
The Times
October 25, 2003

Quincy, IL - (AP) -- Authorities say they don't yet know what caused a ceiling inside a mine near Quincy to collapse, killing a Missouri woman.

They also said they don't know what she was doing in the mine.

Cindy Foglesong, 43, of Hannibal, Mo., was killed when part of a limestone ceiling weighing several tons collapsed deep inside the J. M. Huber Corp. mines, crushing the pickup truck in which she was sitting, Adams County Coroner Gary Hamilton said.

"Part of the ceiling gave way, and several tons of rock came down," he said.

J. M. Huber operations director Rick Zwingelberg said a 50-by-100-foot section of limestone more than a mile deep into the mine fell shortly before 5 p.m. Thursday.  He said the truck was owned by a Huber employee, who has not been identified.

Zwingelberg said the relationship between the employee and Foglesong is unknown, and that company officials do not know how the woman got into the mine.

He said workers are given safety packs and undergo training before being allowed in the mines, and they must use a security swipe card to enter.


Agency investigates Huber mine accident
Herald-Whig, Quincy, Illinois
by Rodney Hart
Oct. 25, 2003

A federal investigation continued Friday into the J. M. Huber mining accident that killed a Hannibal, Mo., woman late Thursday afternoon.  Cindy Foglesong, 43, died when part of a limestone ceiling weighing several tons collapsed deep inside the J. M. Huber Corp. mines on Ill. 57, crushing the pickup truck in which she was sitting.

Adams County Coroner Gary Hamilton pronounced Foglesong dead at 9:21 p.m. Thursday after rescue workers removing the chunks of limestone found her purse in the truck.  Several tons of limestone fell on the truck, investigators said.

Warren Foglesong, her husband, said his wife was "a very sweet and caring woman." The couple have a stepdaughter.  Foglesong said the couple had been married for about seven years.  They returned to Hannibal two years ago after living in Milwaukee.  Foglesong said his wife was from St. Louis.

Thursday night, Rick Zwingelberg, director of operations for J. M. Huber, said a 50-by-100-foot section of limestone ceiling more than a mile deep into the mines fell shortly before 5 p.m.  He said officials do not know what caused the ceiling to collapse.  He said the truck was owned by a Huber employee, who has not been identified.  He said the relationship between the employee and Foglesong is unknown, and that J. M. Huber officials do not know how the woman -- not employed by the company -- got into the mine.

Zwingelberg and other Huber officials did not return phone calls Friday.  The employee, who was operating an endloader some distance away from the truck, was unhurt.  An investigation crew from the U. S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration was at the mine Friday to inspect the damaged area.

The agency is based in Arlington, Va., and has regional offices across the country.  Rodney Brown, a spokesman for the MSHA, said the crew would be in Quincy for several days collecting information and interviewing witnesses.  "It's a full-scale investigation," Brown said.  "It will take four to six weeks to complete, then issue a detailed multipage report that will be available to the public.  "They will leave no stone unturned and they will be doing a very thorough investigation."

The caves stretch from Ill. 57 east to about 14th Street and contain about 700,000 square feet of warehouse space, which is operated by a subsidiary, Underground Warehouses Inc.  Several companies rent space in the caves.  J. M. Huber also mines limestone in other parts of the caves.  The caves were open for business as usual Friday.


Coroner's jury rules mine fatality an accident
Herald-Whig, Quincy, Illinois
by Rodney Hart
November 26, 2003

An Adams County coroner's jury ruled Tuesday as accidental the death of a Hannibal, Mo., woman after a J. M. Huber mine ceiling collapsed on her Oct. 23.  Cindy Foglesong, 43, was pronounced dead about four hours after the collapse.

Rick Zwingelberg, Huber's director of operations, testified Tuesday that Foglesong was not an employee and that Huber officials did not know how she gained access to the mine.  Foglesong was sitting in a pickup truck about three-fourths of a mile into the mine at 3411 Gardner Expressway, when a 50-by-75-foot section of the limestone ceiling fell on the truck, Zwingelberg said.

The truck belonged to Huber employee Leonard Harscher of Mendon.  Zwingelberg confirmed that Harscher was working in the mine at the time of the collapse, but he did not say what he was doing or what, if any, relationship he had with Foglesong.  On the night of the accident, Harscher was reportedly operating an endloader some distance from the pickup truck.

Zwingelberg said that about a quarter of a mile into the mine is a gated area that is accessed only with a company-issued swipe card, and that employee vehicles are not allowed past the gate.  Huber officials do not know who was driving the truck when it went through the gate, Zwingelberg said.  "We have not been able to determine how she got into that area," he said.  Zwingelberg declined to comment after the hearing.

Autopsy reports indicated a 12-ton section of limestone fell on the vehicle, which was crushed to about two feet tall.  Foglesong's death was caused by "compressed asphyxia" due to the rock falling on the truck, said Adams County Coroner Gary Hamilton.  Zwingelberg said unseen layering in the limestone, and not any mine equipment, led to the collapse.  "Just the geological conditions" caused the collapse, he said.  Huber mines 30 feet down in specific areas, leaving about a 60- to 70-foot layer of dirt and limestone as the ceiling, Zwingelberg said.  Large pillars are left in the mined areas to support the ceiling.  There were no indications of problems in the area, which was mined about 30 years ago, Zwingelberg testified.  It is inspected every shift, and the U. S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration inspects the entire cave four times a year.

The six-person jury took only five minutes to rule the death accidental.  Among the interested spectators was attorney JoAnn Trog of Menees, Whitney, Burnet and Trog of St. Louis.  Trog said the firm had "a long relationship" with the Foglesong family, but declined to say if any civil litigation was pending.  Foglesong was married to Warren Foglesong of Hannibal.  Warren Foglesong said his wife was from St. Louis, and the couple had a stepdaughter.

A federal investigation continues into the accident, which took place at just after 5 p.m. Oct. 23.  Hamilton pronounced her dead at 9:21 that night.  The caves stretch from Ill. 57 east to about 14th Street and contain about 700,000 square feet of warehouse space, which is operated by a subsidiary, Underground Warehouses Inc.  Several companies rent space in the caves.  J. M. Huber also mines limestone in other parts of the caves.



See more about these products