CORNING, Ohio (AP) - A preliminary report on a southeast Ohio coal mine rail car collision that injured five men indicates a dispatcher error and a blind spot were factors in the crash.
Two rail cars transporting miners collided Wednesday at a Buckingham Coal mine in Corning.
An Ohio Department of Natural Resources report found a dispatcher allowed a larger track vehicle to enter the mine before confirming a smaller track vehicle was out of the way.
They collided in a dip in the track that's a blind spot from both sides.
The report says track lighting may have kept operators of the vehicles from seeing each other's lights. The track lighting has been removed at the crash site, and the company plans to install extra safety measures there.
It's unclear how seriously the miners were injured or what caused the collision at Buckingham Coal mine in Corning, about 55 miles southeast of Columbus in the area of the Wayne National Forest.
Perry County Deputy Adam Newlon says that two of the men, John Reich of Woodsfield and Brian Post of Corning, were flown by medical helicopter to a hospital in Columbus.
He says two others, Brian McLaughlin of Glouster and Todd Sinift of Corning, were taken to a hospital in Athens and that the fifth miner, Jeremy Hasman of Glouster, was taken to a hospital in Zanesville.
James Riffle, the mine's general superintendent, says the collision will be investigated.
Perry County dispatcher Jeff Wilson says five miners were taken to the hospital after the accident Wednesday morning.
It happened at a Buckingham Coal mine in Corning, about 55 miles southeast of Columbus in the area of the Wayne National Forest.
It wasn't clear what caused the crash or how serious the injuries were. The sheriff's office said two of the injured people were flown to hospitals.
A phone number for Buckingham Coal rang unanswered Wednesday after the collision.
A spokesman for Wayne National Forest confirmed Buckingham Coal does underground mining of privately held minerals beneath the forest but said he couldn't confirm whether the crash happened under forest property.
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