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MSHA News Release: [04/25/2008]
Contact:   Amy Louviere   Matthew Faraci
Phone:   (202) 693-9423   (202) 693-9406
Release Number 08-570-DEN

Mine Safety and Health Administration fines Troy Mine $417,400
Montana mine operator cited for flagrant violations involving ground control

ARLINGTON, Va. - - - The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) has assessed $417,400 in fines against Genesis Inc.'s, Troy Mine in Lincoln County, Mont., for four violations relating to inadequate ground support. The violations were discovered during an inspection of the mine in January, just six months after the fatality of a mine mechanic who was killed when a fall of ground trapped him in the cab of his truck.

"A miner lost his life because of inadequately supported ground conditions last year, and MSHA inspectors discovered similar conditions at the mine six months later," said Richard E. Stickler, acting assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health. "Other miners could have been seriously injured or lost their lives. Mine operators who repeatedly ignore safety regulations will be held accountable."

MSHA inspectors issued the four flagrant citations for Troy Mine's failure to ensure adequate ground support in working areas of the mine. At several locations underground, inspectors found potentially hazardous conditions that could have resulted in serious injury or death to miners. The violations, cited during a federally mandated safety and health inspection, were issued as "significant and substantial," which is defined as a violation reasonably likely to result in a serious injury or illness.

A flagrant violation is defined as a reckless or repeated failure to make reasonable efforts to eliminate a known violation of a mandatory safety and health standard that substantially and proximately caused, or reasonably could have been expected to cause, death or serious bodily injury. Under the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act, a civil penalty of up to $220,000 may be assessed for each flagrant violation.

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