LEWISBURG, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia officials say a 38-year-old coal miner has died in an accident.
The West Virginia Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training said preliminary information indicates Adam DeBoard of Craigsville died of head injuries he suffered in a fall from a highwall mine.
The fall happened shortly before 2 p.m. Thursday at the South Fork Coal Co. LLC Blue Knob Surface Mine in Greenbrier County.
DeBoard was a loader operator.
Gov. Jim Justice said he and first lady Cathy Justice were sad to hear about the death.
“West Virginia lost one of our dedicated coal miners today, and Cathy and I are deeply saddened at the news. We encourage everyone to join us in praying for the family, friends, and co-workers of Adam DeBoard of Craigsville," the governor said in a release. "Brave and courageous miners like Mr. DeBoard are heroes to us all.”
It is the first coal mining fatality in West Virginia this year and the third nationwide. The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration said the others occurred in Kentucky and Illinois.
The agency's inspectors are investigating.