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Mine Disasters in
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Hali-Ola Coal Company
Lutie No. 5 Mine Explosion

Lutie, Oklahoma
November 29, 1930
No. Killed - 15

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Thirteen Miners Killed in Blast at Lutie, Okla.
The Anniston Star, Alabama
November 30, 1930

Lutie, Okla., Nov. 29. (U.P.) -- Rescue workers reported late today that thirteen miners were killed and four injured in a gas explosion at the Hali-Ola Coal Company's No. 5 mine.

The victims were found in the eleventh entry of the mine, 1800 feet underground.

The chamber had been wrecked by a terrific blast.  It was filled with black damp.

Word was sent to the McAlester Fuel Company at McAlester, the firm owning the mine, setting the dead at 13 and the injured at four.

This accounted for the 17 men at work in the chamber.

Lutie, Okla., Nov. 29. (U.P.) -- An explosion, believed caused by ignited gas, wrecked the entrance and passage-ways of the Hali-Ola Coal Company's mine near here late today.  It was believed at least 17 men were entombed.

Rescue crews raced to the scene on motor cars, when news of the accident reached Wilburton, two miles away.

Miners trained to meet such emergencies tore away fallen earth and descended slowly into the shaft.  They shouted back that the explosion was not considered severe enough to cause death by impact and that they hoped to liberate the trapped men.

Sixty in Mine

Sixty men were in the mine, according to John Sugg, president of the company, but 45 indicated they were safe.

Sugg explained the explosion sealed only one entry, known as number 10 1-2.  About 17 men were in this entry, he said.  It is 1,700 feet underground.

Workmen reached entry 10 1-2 about two hours after the explosion and brought one man to the surface alive.

Bodies of the men were brought up slowly and taken to a morgue where they were identified by H. G. Philbbi, auditor of the mining company.

Rescue crews were rushed to the mine, which is situated fear here in Laramie County, from McAlester and Pittsburgh, towns in the coal mining area.

The workers who were uninjured began a descent into the wrecked entry immediately after the explosion, which sent a tremor through the earth.

Race to Miners

The men worked skillfully in their race toward their fellow miners.  Rescue operations were closely organized because of drill in such work which is made a part of the miner's training.  It was the third major mine disaster in Oklahoma in a year.

The explosion, believed caused by ignited gas, occurred early in the afternoon while sixty men were working in the slope mine.

Only a section known as the eleventh east entry, where 17 men were working, collapsed.  The rest of the shift escaped and joined the rescue operations, working swiftly and reaching the victims about three hours after the accident occurred.

The chamber in which the men were killed was filled with black damp, rescuers reported.

Listing of Fatalities in the Lutie Mine Disaster
The Latimer County News, Oklahoma
December 5, 1930
  • L. B. Boyd, brought out of mine alive, died in Hartshorne Hospital
  • Lon Swindle, brought out of mine alive, died in Hartshorne Hospital
  • A. L. (Bud) Snow, 44, Center Point, wife and one child
  • J. H. Mcmahan, 29, wife and four children
  • August Mauer, 53, Red Oak, single
  • G. W. Paden, 38, wife and four children
  • J. W. Wilburn, 44, Wilburton, wife and two children
  • L. B. Boyd, 22, single
  • Mike Maskasky, 46, Lutie, wife and three children
  • Tony Busselatto, 49, Lutie, wife and three children
  • Pete Busselatto, (son of Tony), 20, single
  • Louis Zoia, 62, wife and five children
  • Joseph Guerra, 51, Lutie, wife and eight children
  • Raymond Sutmiller, 18, Lutie, single
  • Roy Everett Pate, 20, Lutie, single
  • Cal Evans, 38, Lutie, wife and four children
  • Lon C. Swindell, 38, Lutie, wife and two children

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