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February 1, 2014

Estate of Baxter man sues CONSOL for wrongful death

FAIRMONT — The estate of Glen L. Clutter, a Baxter man who died during a mining accident at Loveridge No. 22 mine last February, has sued CONSOL for wrongful death.

Glen Clutter died at Ruby Memorial Hospital on Feb. 14, after being hit in the face with a metal beam as he tried to re-rail a supply car.

Debra L. Clutter, the administrator for Glen L. Clutter’s estate, filed a lawsuit with the Marion County Circuit Court in November 2013.

The complaint cited two defendants, Wayne Conaway, safety instructor at the Loveridge mine, and Steve Fox.

Both were supervisors working at Loveridge mine during the time of Clutter’s accident.

Investigation by federal and state mine regulatory bodies determined the following causes of the incident were under the direct control of mine management:

• Train the supply motormen, including Clutter and his co-worker Scott Shay, on the task of using air bags and blocking when re-railing track-mounted equipment.

• Ensure the safe work policies and procedures were followed regarding the proper use of the air bags and blocking equipment.

• Maintain the track to prevent a derailment between the No. 124 and No. 126 blocks.

• Perform an adequate pre-shift self-examination of the track.

The investigation said the pre-shift self-examination could have prevented the derailment.

CONSOL operated Loveridge No. 22 mine in Marion County at that time and received citations in direct correlation with the incident.

Since February 2013, CONSOL has sold the mine to another company.

The complaint stated, as a direct result of the defendants’ acts and/or omissions which caused the wrongful death of Glen L. Clutter, on or about Feb. 12, 2013, the defendants are liable to the plaintiff for all damages.

The damages include: pain and suffering from the time of the injury to death; sorrow, mental anguish and solace which may include society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices and advice of Glen Clutter; compensation for reasonably expected loss of income; compensation for reasonably expected services, protection, care and assistance provided by Glen Clutter; reasonable funeral expenses; and other expenses incurred as a result of his wrongful death.

On Jan. 16, Conaway and Fox filed motions to dismiss.

The case has since been transferred to federal court in Clarksburg.

Email Kristen Talerico at ktalerico@timeswv.com or follow her on Twitter @KTalericoTWV.

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