As the investigations at the Upper Big Branch continue, we are reminded of Massey Energy's long history of safety violations. The violations show Massey's willingness to ignore laws and regulations that are in place to keep West Virginia's miners safe.
* The mine has been cited for over 3,000 violations by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), 638 since 2009.
* Since 1995, Massey’s Upper Big Branch-South Mine has been cited for 3,007 safety violations. Massey is contesting 353 violations, and 127 are delinquent.
* Massey is contesting over a third (34.7%) of the 516 safety citations the Upper Big Branch-South Mine received in 2009, its greatest count in the last 15 years
* In March 2010, 53 new safety citations were issued for Massey’s Upper Big Branch-South Mine, including violations of its mine ventilation plan.
* Massey was fined more than $382,000 in the past year for repeated serious violations involving its ventilation plan and equipment.
* Over $2.2 million in fines have been assessed against Massey’s Upper Big Branch-South Mine since 1995, with $791,327 paid. Massey is contesting $1,128,833 in fines. Massey’s delinquent fines total $246,320.
“The families of our fallen miners must stand together in this time of tragedy to call for swift answers and ultimately, accountability.“ said Mike Callaghan, of the firm Neely&Callaghan, which is counseling one of the victim’s families.
Callaghan, who spent almost a decade in the United States Attorney’s Office, prosecuted numerous companies for endangering and causing the death of West Virginia miners.