US marks sixth coal death

A ROCK truck operator at a Kentucky surface mine was killed on Thursday, marking the sixth coal-mining fatality in the US so far this year.

Donna Schmidt

According to the Associated Press, 32-year-old Jeremy Steward was driving the truck at a mine operated by J&A Mining when the unit ran over an embankment and overturned at about 8:00am local time.

Local media reported that Steward was listed on the mine licence as the operation’s foreman and superintendent.

The US Mine Safety and Health Administration and state officials did not immediately respond to an ILN request for comment.

Both the Kentucky office of Mine Safety and Licensing and MSHA have commenced investigations into the Letcher County incident. In the meantime, the mine has been idled.

The six coal deaths this year have all occurred at surface mines or surface facilities of underground operations. It is the second fatality this year in Kentucky.