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Mining Accident and Disasters

Pittsburgh Coal Company
Cincinnati Mine Explosion

Courtney, Pennsylvania
April 23, 1913
No. Killed - 98

An explosion occurred in the Cincinnati mine, Wednesday, April 23, 1913, at about 12:00 o'clock noon, in which 97 men were killed, and subsequently one of the rescue party wearing breathing apparatus lost his life.

Of the number killed, probably 20 or more of them were suffocated, the balance being killed by the force of the explosion.  There were about 167 men in the mine at the time of the explosion.  Of this number about 67 escaped uninjured through old workings, and three were rescued alive - one by the first rescue parties and two sixty hours after the explosion by exploring parties.

Five mules were taken out alive on Sunday, April 27, four days after the explosion.

The coronerís jury placed the legal responsibility for the deaths of the 96 men killed upon the Mine Foreman McNeil, who was killed, for permitting open lights to be used in a section of the mine where gas was being generated in such large quantity; and the moral responsibility upon the Mining Laws of Pennsylvania, which does not render compulsory the use of safety lamps in such sections, but leaves such decision to the discretion of the Mine Foreman.

Historical Summary of Mine Disasters in the United States - Volume I

USBM Final Accident Investigation Report (5.0 Mb)