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MSHA to Release Aracoma Report

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Another report on the Aracoma Alma Number One mine fire is about to be released.

The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration says its report on the investigation will be released Thursday in Logan.

The January 2006 fire killed miners Don Bragg and Ellery Elvis Hatfield. The pair died after becoming separated from their crew in thick smoke.

A lawyer representing their widows hopes the federal report mirrors one issued by state investigators last November. Bruce Stanley says he doesn't think MSHA's report will be substantially different.

The state report issued last November blamed missing walls that control air flow and faulty firefighting equipment as key factors in the deaths.

The Aracoma fire occurred less than three weeks after 12 miners died because of the Sago Mine explosion in Upshur County. The back-to-back accidents led to sweeping changes in state and federal mine safety laws.

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