Probe Blames Feds for Utah Mine Horror

Labor Dept. cites negligence by mine safety agency
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 1, 2008 3:15 AM CDT
A tattered sign supporting six trapped miners inside the Crandall Canyon Mine. Their bodies have never been recovered.    (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
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(Newser) – A federal probe into a Utah mine disaster that killed nine people has accused the federal agency overseeing mine safety of negligence. The finding by the Labor Department's Office of Inspector General does not rule out the possibility that the owner of the site used undue influence on the Mine Safety and Health Agency to secure approval of operations, reports the Salt Lake City Tribune.

Six miners and three rescue workers were killed last August after a cave-in at the Crandall Canyon mine. The investigation did not examine the cause of the cave-in. A report recently published by a Senate committee called for a criminal probe into the actions of mine operator Murray Energy.