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Mine Hazard Awareness Campaign

Accident Information File

A 15-year-old boy from Bethalto, Ill., died of injuries suffered when he jumped about 150 feet from a bluff into a pool of water at an abandoned quarry north of Alton, Ill. The boy's injuries included a broken neck, lacerated spleen, and bruises to the left lung and left side of the head. In the early 1980s, several people died at the site in swimming accidents during summer months. Southern Illinois University, which owns the pond, tried for several years to discourage swimming by filling it with brush and logs. The rotting vegetation contributed to the water's transformation from a sparkling swimming hole to a swampy morass. But the area continued to draw swimmers, who knocked down a metal fence and beat a well-worn trail up to the rim of the limestone bluffs. (Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch)