29 miners killed in a single blast at Massey Energy’s Big Branch pit

The coal mining industry in the USA suffered its deadliest year since 1992 according to official figures recently released.

Much of the death toll stemmed from a single explosion when 29 miners were killed on April 5 in a blast at Massey Energy Co.’s Upper Big Branch pit.

48 miners died in America’s 1,500 coal mines in 2010, the highest body count since 55 were killed in 1992, according to data from the Mine Safety and Health Administration.

To put things in perspective, 2009 saw the industry’s lowest tally since 1990 with 18 killed.

State investigators say their report into what caused the Big Branch mine blast should be finished this year.