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Orient Mine Hoisting Disaster

Orient, Franklin County, Illinois
September 17, 1917
No. Killed - 5

USBM Final Investigation Report  PDF Format
1917 Illinois Coal Fatalities  (9.5 Mb)  PDF Format
The Belleville News-Democrat, Sept. 19, 1917  PDF Format
See also: New Orient No. 2 Mine Explosion, Jan. 29, 1926
Orient No. 2 Mine Explosion, Dec. 21, 1951
Orient No. 5 Mine Explosion, Aug. 15, 1968
Orient No. 6 Roof Fall, Jul. 9, 1986

Five men were killed in the Orient Mine.

An incompletely caged loaded car at the main shaft had caused a wreck, and men were being hoisted on the escapement shaft cage.  This was a single cage with counterbalance in guides that operated like a separate cage.

This counterbalance came out of its guidelines and collided with the cage at the halfway location in the shaft, causing the cage to fall to the shaft bottom, a distance of about 250 feet.

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