April 15th, 2010
10:56 AM ET
8 years ago

Obama criticizes mine owner, orders review of mine safety records

Washington (CNN) - President Obama on Thursday ordered a review of mines with poor safety records and criticized the owner of the West Virginia coal mine where an explosion killed 29 people last week.

In remarks at the White House, Obama said the April 5 disaster at the Upper Big Branch Mine was due in part to failures by both the management and loopholes in existing laws and regulations.

Obama cited "a failure first and foremost of management, a failure of oversight and a failure of laws so riddled with loopholes" that companies repeatedly can violate safety regulations without penalty.

The president spoke to reporters after meeting Thursday with Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and Joseph Main of the Mine Safety and Health Administration to discuss the Naoma, West Virginia, explosion - the worst U.S. mine disaster in nearly 40 years.

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Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Darnell

    Way to be reactive when you should have been pro-active Rookie-in-Chief!

    April 15, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  2. Bob in Pa

    Yes, you are guilty until proven innocent you greedy capitalist pigs.

    April 15, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  3. Red by Choice

    Comments without facts or understanding....Looks a lot like his comments about the Boston Police department. Looks a lot like pandering to the unions. And this guy is our leader? I wish he would just focus on apologizing for the US and quit screwing up the economy, labor issues and everything else he touches. Considering that it is April 15th, I wonder if his staff paid their taxes this year.

    April 15, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |

    Obama has never met a corporation he liked. Corporations are evil. When will workers unite and stop the expoitation of labor as Marx so beautifully expressed.

    Workers have nothing to lose, but their chains...Go Obama!

    April 15, 2010 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  5. Mark from Louisiana

    Gosh in the last two weeks obummer has not only turned into a nuclear weapons expert but now he is also a mining expert. He needs to keep his mouth shut and maybe think of something to get this economy going again so people can work.

    April 15, 2010 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  6. gary

    There's a great picture of this mine owner in his stars and stripes shirt speaking at a Tea Bagger Party meeting. Of course, he's for ordinary people and opposed to socialists groups like unions. And, he's also got blood on his hands. He should be put on trial and handcuffed like the petty, greedy criminal he really is!

    April 15, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  7. Deborah/kansascity

    Thank the previous administration's deregulation of everything and leaving it up to business to "voluntarily" comply and protect workers lives. This is what happens when we vilify unions. We should have remembered that from the "sweat shop" days in the garment industry. Business and Corporations will always put profit ahead of human life and need regulation and strong unions.

    Just like in Virginia, where the Governor has recended the protections for homosexual employees of the State, but asks that "voluntary" restraint from descrimination exist. Not likely.

    April 15, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  8. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    He's right. 1300 violations....1300! How can you continue to look the other way? Or is it that the lives of these poor miners mean less than nothing? Are they considered the immigrant and expendable workers of the Appalachians?

    Apparently the answer is yes.


    April 15, 2010 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  9. Jim kowas

    If anyone's to blame its MSHA's for not doing anything about it long ago.
    Why is it that the government never solves this type problem til after it happens. MSHA should have shut it down long ago based on the problems. Either that or the problems were not that significant. Moreover,
    somebody in the mine didn't do something correctly or it wouldn't hav happened.

    April 15, 2010 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    Pkmi hope obama shuts this mine down for a week have his own crew make in insepctions have the owner work in the un safe areas for one month

    April 15, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |