North Yorkshire Police were called at 5.30pm today (27th Sept 2011), to an incident at Kellingley Colliery near Knottingley.
The force received reports that two miners were trapped underground. Officers attended the scene along with colleagues from the Yorkshire Ambulance Service, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, Mine Rescue Specialists and UK Coal.
Yorkshire Ambulance Service’s Hazardous Area Response team, who are trained and equipped to work underground were deployed to the incident, supported by mine rescue specialists.
At around 7.30pm, two miners were brought to the surface by Yorkshire Ambulance Service and the mine rescue team. .
One man in his forties and from the West Yorkshire area was taken to Pinderfields hospital with minor injuries.
Sadly, the other miner, a man in his forties from North Yorkshire, was pronounced dead at the scene.
A joint investigation into the incident will be carried out by Specialist Mine Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive and North Yorkshire Police.
In a statement from UK Coal:
UK Coal confirms that a fall of rock occurred at 16.35 in our Kellingley mine which trapped two of our colleagues.
UK Coal’s full emergency plan was immediately invoked. This included UK Coals own staff, mines rescue services, the HSE and other emergency services.
Colleagues, working underground at the time, successfully recovered one of the two men who had been trapped by the lower leg. He received immediate medical attention and is now on the surface.
UK Coal deeply regrets to confirm that our second colleague was confirmed dead by our own medical team, despite the best efforts of colleagues on the scene.
No names will be released until all family members have been told. Our thoughts are with the families of those involved.
UK Coal will provide a full briefing on all facts as they become known.
Energy Secretary Chris Huhne said:
I am immensely saddened by the news this evening of the tragic death at Kellingley colliery.
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the miner who died and with his colleague who was also trapped, the brave rescue teams and emergency services who attended the scene, and the wider UK mining community at this time.