Will MSHA Probe of Massey Mine Disaster Be Done in Secret?

"Sometime this morning, investigators from state and federal agencies are expected to gather at the Mine Safety and Health Academy outside Beckley to begin planning their probe of the explosion one week ago that killed 29 coal miners at a Massey Energy mine in Raleigh County, W.Va.

Investigators will start examining maps and mine files. They’ll divvy up tasks and chart a course for how to get started on a massive and enormously complex investigation that could take many months.

But there are a few things they won’t do …

They won’t be open to the public … Almost certainly, the investigative interviews will occur behind closed doors. Members of the press and the public will be shut out from this terribly important government task. Despite the efforts of the Salt Lake Tribune, which has sued unsuccessfully in federal court previously to try to open such proceedings, the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration has staunchly insisted on secrecy in these proceedings."

Ken Ward Jr. reports in Coal Tattoo via the Charleston Gazette April 12, 2010.

See Also:

"Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster: Should Investigation Be Public?" (Huffington Post)

"Other Dangerous Mines? Federal Data Can't Tell You" (Sunlight Foundation)

"Mine Blast Investigation in Works" (Charleston Gazette)

Source: Coal Tattoo, 04/13/2010