accident

A coal miner is dead after a bulldozer accident in the early morning hours on Sunday.

The incident happened at the Bridger coal mine near Rock Springs, which is jointly owned by PacifiCorp and Idaho Power. The Sweetwater County sheriff’s department says Mark Christopher Stassinos, 44, died after being thrown out of his bulldozer as it plunged over a highwall at the mine.

PacifiCorp spokesman Jeff Hymas says Stassinos had been working there for the last two years, and that mining operations have stopped pending an investigation.

DAN CEPEDA

A Tuesday oil rig accident northeast of Douglas continues to spew gas into the atmosphere.

At last count, 50 of 67 residents volunteered to evacuate the surrounding area of the leak, staying in hotels paid for by the site’s natural gas operator Chesapeake Energy.

No injuries have been reported.

Oil and gas commissioner Tom Doll says it’s unclear how much gas has been lost.

The number of fatalities on Wyoming’s highways is down six percent compared to this time last year.

So far, 127 people have died in accidents in Wyoming this year, with four deaths occurring around the Thanksgiving holiday. Wyoming Highway Patrol Lieutenant Troy McLees says those numbers should be even lower, but also thinks winter driving habits in the state are beginning to improve. McLees attributes the decrease in fatalities this year in part to new signs posted along Interstate 80.