SOMERSET, Pa. — A coal miner was flown to Memorial Medical Center Thursday after becoming trapped under a motorized vehicle in the Quecreek Mine.
The worker, whose name was not released, was struck shortly by an ATV-style transporter used to carry miners through underground tunnels, said John Poister, a spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Protection.
“The driver was attempting to turn around and instead of hitting the brakes, he hit the accelerator and ran into the miner,” Poister said.
The accident trapped the miner beneath the vehicle.
The man had a broken leg, but his injuries were not believed to be life-threatening, Poister said.
The accident occurred a significant distance into the Lincoln Township mine. Because of that, it took crews about 40 minutes to bring the wounded worker to the surface, Poister said.
Poister said the DEP’s Bureau of Deep Mine Safety was notified of the accident and an investigation is under way.
“Anytime there’s an accident in a mine, whether it has to do with actual mining or other procedures, it’s going to be investigated,” he said.
The Quecreek Mining Co., a subsidiary of Russian steelmaker Severstal, owns the mining permit for the Quecreek Mine.
The Quecreek Mine was the site of one of the world’s most successful mine rescues when nine men were brought to the surface three days after being trapped inside a deep mine shaft in July 2002.