Coroner identifies Indiana coal mine accident victims

PRINCETON, Ind. (AP) - The Gibson County coroner has identified the three men who fell from a construction bucket Friday, plunging 500 feet to their deaths in an air shaft being built at a coal mine.

Christopher Todd Richardson, 38, of Cedar Bluff, Va., Daniel
McFadden, 66, of Greybull, Wyo., and Jarred A. Ashmore, 23, of
Henderson, Ky., all died from multiple blunt impact trauma
consistent with the fall, Coroner Richard Hickrod said Saturday
after conducting autopsies on the victims.

Hickrod did not know whether all three men worked for Frontier-Kemper Constructors Inc., the company building the 550-foot vertical ventilation shaft at the Gibson County Coal mine in southwestern Indiana. A phone recording at Frontier-Kemper in Evansville said its offices were closed Saturday.

Ashmore was a project engineer with Frontier-Kemper Constructors Inc., according to an obituary provided to The Messenger by Tomblinson Funeral Home Slaughters-Hanson Chapel in Slaughters, Ky.

Ashmore was born in Madisonville and was living in Henderson at the time of his death. He was a 2001 graduate of Webster County High School and a 2006 graduate of the University of Evansville, receiving a bachelors degree in civil engineering.

No one else was injured in the accident Friday, said George Zugel, director of safety and health for Frontier-Kemper. The open-top bucket was somehow "upset" inside the shaft as it was descending and the three men fell to the bottom, Zugel said. He said he did not know what caused the bucket to shift.

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