Curtis Tate Published

MSHA Report: Miner Died When Ejected From Bulldozer In Mingo County

A close up on a coal miner's helmet.
The first mining fatality of 2023 happened in Mingo County.

A 73-year-old miner, with 53 years of experience, was ejected from a bulldozer he was operating.

That’s according to a preliminary report from the Mine Safety and Health Administration on the death of William Mapes on Sunday.

Mapes was killed on the job as a contractor for LMS Excavating of Freeburn, Kentucky.

He was working at the Appalachian Resource West Virginia’s Grapevine South Surface Mine in Mingo County.

According to the MSHA report, Mapes was operating a bulldozer when it left the haulage road and rolled down a hill. He was not wearing a seatbelt. No autopsy was performed, the report said.

Mapes’ death is the first of a coal miner in 2023, according to MSHA statistics on mine fatalities.