WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- The number of miners who died on the job more than doubled in 2010, with 29 of the fatalities occurring at Massey Energy Corp.'s (MEE) Upper Big Branch mine in April, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday.
There were 71 miners who died last year, compared with 34 miners in 2009. Of the workers who died on the job in 2010, 29 were victims of the explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia.
More than half the workers died in coal mines, while the remainder died in metal and nonmetal operations, the department said. The miners died from explosions, roof falls and powered haulage accidents.
The Labor Department's Mine Safety and Health Administration said it is working to reduce deaths with more aggressive inspections and standards.
"No miners should have to die on the job just to earn a paycheck," said Joseph Main, assistant secretary of labor for mine safety and health.
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