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Mine Disasters in
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Volpe Mining Company
Butler Slope Explosion

Pittston, Pennsylvania
June 2, 1938
No. Killed - 10



From the Google News Archives:  External Link
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Successful Rescue

Rescuers were successful in bringing six miners to the surface after an undisclosed period.  Seriously injured were John Waskiewicz and Peter Morgantini.  They were treated at the Pittston Hospital for skull fractures and severe burns.  Others hurt were Warner Posdzich, Peter Wasluk, Patrick Nardone, and Joseph Lusto.  Lusto was the only one who reached the surface unaided.  Clutching an injured wrist, he staggered out of the mouth.  His wife, screaming, darted from the crowd and into his arms.


Explosion Toll Stands at 10
The Bee Danville, Virginia
June 3, 1938

Scranton, Pa., June 3. -- (AP) -- A barrier of debris and deadly gas held the secret today of an explosion which killed ten miners in the eastern Pennsylvania anthracite field's second major disaster in two months.

State mine inspectors who donned gas masks and went with rescue squads 700 feet beneath the earth's surface to remove bodies and bring out six injured said the exact cause of the blast yesterday might not be determined for several days.

Wives and children of the miners -- with several hundred townsfolk from nearby Avoca and other communities -- stood silent or sobbing at the mouth of the slope of the red ash vein of the Volpe Coal Company as dead and injured were brought to the surface.

The dead:
  • Alex Glanko, Moosic
  • John Clark, Moosic
  • John Kovaleski, Dupont
  • Martin Wocniak, Dupont
  • Adam Mark, Dupont
  • Gus Posdzich, Dupont
  • John Phillips, Dupont
  • Michael Guzay, Dupont
  • John Lokuta, Dupont
  • Sam Adonizio, Hughestown
Seriously injured were John Waskiewicz of Dupont and Peter Morgantini of Pittston.  They were treated at the Pittston Hospital for skull fractures and severe burns.

Others hurt were Warner Posdzich, son of Gus, Scranton; Peter Wasluk, Wyoming; Patrick Nardone, Pittston, and Joseph Lusto, Dupont.

Lusto was the only one who reached the surface unaided.  Clutching an injured wrist, he staggered out of the mouth.  His wife, screaming, darted from the crowd and into his arms.

State Mine Inspector Henry R. Owens of Scranton and Harvey Curry of Wilkes-Barre examined a possibility gas might have seeped in from abandoned workings nearby.

They said props in the shaft were wrecked and coal tumbled down into chambers and gangways.

They ordered a new ventilating system put into operation to make safe the work of clearing out the debris.

Eight men were killed and ten hurt April 27 by an explosion of gas in the St. Clair coal mine, near Pottstown.



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