Search begins for missing man in abandoned W.Va. mine

Published 11-29-2018

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WHARTON, W.Va. (AP) - A West Virginia mine rescue team is searching an abandoned coal mine for a man who was reported missing.

State Miner's Health, Safety and Training director Eugene White says in a news release the effort began Thursday with Blackhawk Mining to enter the company's former underground mine in Wharton. The mine was closed in 1998 and has been sealed.

The statement says law enforcement efforts to locate the man above ground were exhausted Wednesday. The statement didn't release the man's name.

Officials have reviewed maps of the mine but conditions inside are unknown. White says toxic levels of gas, roof falls, flooding and other dangers may exist. Two members of the mine safety office and one from Blackhawk Mining are searching the mine using breathing packs and other safety gear.

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