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Alabama Mine Explosion

Federal mining officials cited an Alabama coalmine operator for several safety violations that contributed to an accident last year in which 13 miners died.

It happened in September 2001.

Jim Walters Resources was cited for 27 separate violations related to the accident.

The key violation was the failure to start evacuating the mine after four men were injured in an initial underground explosion. Twelve more miners died trying to rescue the four men.

A second larger explosion trapped the men in a raging inferno more than 2,000 feet below the surface.

Jim Walter was allowed 10 days to ask for an informal meeting with the Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Blue Creek Number Five is the nation's deepest coal shaft mine.


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