Regulators Fault Arch Coal For Miner's Death

Apr 29, 2014

The Mine Safety and Health Administration says that Arch Coal could have prevented the August 2013 death of a miner at its Black Thunder facility near Wright.

Jacob Dowdy, 24, was crushed by an out-of-control shovel that rolled backwards over his pick-up truck. MSHA coal mine administrator Kevin Stricklin says if Arch had been following its own safety procedures, Dowdy wouldn’t have been behind the shovel.

"People should know better," Stricklin says. "While the individual that was killed only had two years [of experience], there had to be management personnel present that condoned this."

One other person was injured in the incident. The agency issued six citations to Arch Coal, including one for not properly maintaining the shovel. Penalties haven’t been announced. An Arch spokesperson declined to comment on the report.