MSHA Reports Reveal Details Behind Miner’s Death

GREENBRIER COUNTY, W.Va. (WOAY) – Mine-safety regulators say a mining death occurred because the mine operator didn’t identify the place where the miner was standing as an area that should be avoided.

Adam DeBoard died in March at a Greenbrier County mine owned by South Fork Coal Company.

The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration says the operator didn’t train miners to avoid areas like the one DeBoard died in.

MSHA cited South Fork Coal for failing to keep miners away from the area and for failing to train its miners.

The operator implemented “corrective actions,” including an 8-hour training class for miners. The operators also painted and marked the area DeBoard died in with warning signs, cameras and barriers.

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Kassie Simmons joined the team in January 2019 as a weekend journalist. She graduated from Virginia Tech in just two and a half years with a BA in multimedia journalism. During her short time at Virginia Tech, she served as the editor for the university’s chapter of The Tab. Kassie was named the top reporter for The Tab at Virginia Tech on multiple occasions and made the list for the top 30 reporters for The Tab in the U.S. She also studied theater performance and minored in creative writing. Before coming to WOAY, Kassie interned at WSLS in Roanoke and the Tidewater Review in her hometown of West Point, Va. She has loved following breaking news since her childhood and has a passion for delivering the stories people care most about. Kassie is excited to be working in Southern West Virginia and looks forward to all the adventures ahead of her. You can follow her on Twitter at @KassieLSimmons and like her page on Facebook. If you have a story you think she should check out, send her an email at