Mining: Disasters

Table of Contents

Mining has always been dangerous, because of explosions, cave-ins, and the difficulty of rescue. The worst single disaster in British coal mining history was at Senghenydd in South Wales. On the morning of 14 October 1913 an explosion and subsequent fire killed 436 men and boys. Only 72 bodies were recovered. The Monongah Mine disaster of Monongah, West Virginia 6 December 1907 was the worst mining disaster in American History. The explosion was caused by the ignition of methane (also called “firedamp“), which in turn ignited the coal dust. In all, the lives of 362 men were lost in the underground explosion.


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