Massey Energy

On April 5, 2010, a spark ignited methane gas and combustible coal dust, sending an inferno tearing through the Upper Big Branch mine in Montcoal, W.Va. Twenty-nine men were instantly incinerated. On Dec. 6, in the largest settlement for a mining disaster in U.S. history, Alpha Natural Resources--which this year bought Massey Energy, the company that ran the mine at the time of the explosion--agreed to pay $46.5 million in restitution to miners' families, $35 million in fines and $128 million for safety upgrades and research. But as part of the agreement, Alpha will face no criminal charges. "It was an...

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