Notes - The information in this page is mainly compiled from appendices to the reports of the Inspector of Mines and Collieries - William Alexander for the Western District of Scotland and Robert Williams for the Eastern District of Scotland. Additional details from the main body of the report are given where available. Many accidents are not listed in these reports and additional names have been added from newspaper reports and other sources - information not sourced from the mine inspectors reports is indicated by a shaded gray background
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|Year||Month||Day||Name of Colliery||Where situated||Owners name||Person(s) killed||Occupation||Age||Category (if given)||Cause of death and remarks|
|1879||January||8||Bogend||Kilwinning||Eglinton Iron Co||Robert Buchanan||Brusher||45||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof while engaged building near the face|
|1879||January||9||Brownieside||New Monkland, LKS||Wm Black & sons||John Welsh||Collier||25||In shafts whilst ascending or descending by machinery||Cage got out of guides while descending, and they fell out||Newspaper report - New Monkland pages|
|1879||January||11||Orbiston||Bothwell, LKS||Mossend Iron Co||John Gillies||Bricklayer||--||Underground- sundries||By the falling of part of an arch which he and others were building for an engine house near pit bottom||Newspaper report- Bothwell pages|
|1879||January||16||Glengarnock No 5||Kilbirnie||M Cunningham||Michael Duffy||Miner||33||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of ironstone and roof||Newspaper Report - Ayrshire pages|
|1879||January||30||Cadder No 9||Bishopbriggs||Carron Iron Co||George Burns||Fireman||60||In ironstone/fire clay mines miscellaneous underground||Suffocated by gases|
From Main body of report: The victim was an experienced fireman who was suffocated by gases. On the day before the accident, and shortly after the deceased entered the mine, it was discovered that the shaft fittings, &c. were burning. All egress by it being stopped the workmen were conducted to the outlet shaft, and there drawn to the surface. On the following morning it appears that the deceased, who was in charge of the workings, descended the outlet pit for the purpose of making an examination of the burning shaft, and to ascertain whether the fire had communicated with the workings adjoining it. After satisfying himself, he and a neighbouring workman proceeded to explore the state of the lower bottom, eleven fathoms under where the fire originated. In approaching the lower bottom they encountered choke damp which extinguished their lights. They made their way back in the dark, but ultimately both were overpowered with the damp. After waiting for some time their companions who were left on the main return aircourse, finding the air affected, became alarmed, and in proceeding in the direction of the shaft heard a cry which they knew was for help. They advanced as far as the damp would permit, but had to return for assistance. After considerable exertions the deceased and his companion were found, the latter recovered, but the former, who was farther in and so more difficult to reach, was dead.
|1879||January||31||Haughead||Hamilton, LKS||John Macdonald||Dennis Hasson||Collier||14||Falls of Coal & Sides||At stooping, head coal. Want of sprags||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||February||1||Bathville No 1 pit||Bathgate, Linlithgow||James Wood||James Harvie||Collier||16||Falls of Roof||At face, crossing a hitch. Rock roof. Long wall|
|1879||February||4||Greenfield No 2||Hamilton, LKS||Hamilton Coal Co.||James Johnston||Roadsman||27||Falls of Roof||At stooping while drawing props||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||February||5||Hutchison No 2||Garscadden||M Cunningham||George Hamilton||Drawer||20||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof|
|1879||February||8||Maryville||Bothwell, LKS||John Hendrie||John McFarlane||Water drawer||18||Explosion of Firedamp||(see report)|
From Main body of report: On 8th February at Maryville, two men were sinking a blind pit to connect a pair of drifts, one of which was 8 fathoms below the other. There was a bore hole in the blind pit through to the lower drift, and gas from the lower drift came up the hole, ignited at the sinkers open lights and caused an explosion in the lower drift. A boy who happened to be leading water there was killed by the explosion. It seemed to me that the manager was to blame for allowing the accumulation of fire-damp to take place, and by your instructions he was tried before Sheriff Birnie, at Hamilton, for breach of the 1st General Rule, but was acquitted.
|1879||February||10||Allanshaw||Hamilton, LKS||Allanshaw Coal Co||Hugh Brownlie||Engineer||35||In shafts miscellaneous||Struck on the head by cage while making repairs at the top of shaft. Died 24th March||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||February||15||Gartshore No 4||Kilsyth||W Baird & Co||James Chalmers||Boy||16||In ironstone/fire clay mines miscellaneous underground||Whilst riding upon a train of loaded hutches||Newspaper report - Stirlingshire pages|
|1879||February||20||Muiredge No 1||Wemyss, FIF||Bowman & Co||John Archibald||Banksman||30||On surface- miscellaneous||They were turning the handles of an old crane, heaving up a bucket, when the framework of the crane gave way||Newspaper Report - Fife pages NB Date should be 22 February|
|1879||February||22||Drumuir No 2||Kilmaurs||Merry & Cunningham||Richd. McLatchie||Collier||19||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal at face|
|1879||February||25||Ryesholm||Dalry||M Cunningham||John Reynolds||Pony driver||17||In ironstone/fire clay mines miscellaneous underground||Was riding upon the hutches, fell off and was run over|
|1879||February||27||Craighead No 2||Blantyre, LKS||Wm Baird & Co||William Black||Brusher||--||Falls of Roof||At face, fall of brushing. Long wall||Newspaper report - Blantyre pages|
|1879||February||27||Hurlford No 15||Hurlford||Peter Sturrock||Hugh Craig||Collier||20||In shafts||Fell into the shaft, in what way not known|
From Main body of report: Took place at a mine on a morning when the men were being lowered to their work. It appears that after a number of them had descended, the pitheadman had arranged for a cage to be stopped at the lower scaffold for the purpose of placing pitwood upon it. He was engaged assorting the wood upon the cage, when it seems, unknown to any one, the deceased had in some way got into the opposite side of the shaft and fallen down to within ten feet of the bottom, where he was intercepted by the cage which was hanging there. The "bottomer" who was near, on hearing a noise and discovering something wrong went to the shaft, but singularly enough though he heard the deceased speaking, he seemed to have lost his presence of mind and failed to signal to the pithead so as to get the cage lowered, and in consequence of the delay, the loaded cage with wood was lowered and the cage upon which the deceased had fallen was raised. It is uncertain, but highly probable that he sustained further injuries whilst being raised in the shaft. He was alive when the cage reached the surface, but died soon after. No-one saw the accident happen, neither did any one see the deceased approach the pit. It was a particularly close and dark morning, and though the pitheadman and others stated that no one could have entered the shaft unknown to them, I think it possible that the deceased, who must have reached the mine in the usual way though unobserved, may also have entered the shaft accidentally and unseen.
|1879||February||27||Souterhouse No 1||Coatbridge||Souterhouse Coal Co||Wm Russell|
|18||Miscellaneous underground||Jamm'd against the roof of the mine|
From Main body of report: Happened to a "chainman," whose duty it was to conduct the traffic up and down an incline. It appears that on the morning of the accident, after having signalled away a train of full hutches, and when it was lifted, he leapt upon the front hutch, but had not proceeded far when he was jammed between it and the roof. He managed to remain on the hutch until he reached the landing when his cries attracted the attention of the oversman and others who relieved him, and had him taken to the surface. His injuries proved fatal two days after.
|1879||March||4||Loanhead||Lasswade, Edinburgh||Shotts Iron Co||Sam. Halliday||Collier||45||Falls of Roof||At face. Stoop and room.||Newspaper report - Lothians pages|
|1879||March||19||Harthill||Shotts, LKS||Coltness Iron Co.||Alex Findlay||Engineman||--||In Ironstone mines||Explosion of steam boiler|
From Main body of report: On the 19th March a boiler explosion occurred at Harthill Pit, belonging to the Coltness Iron Company. There were 10 boilers working at the time, and every one of them was shifted. One man was killed and three injured. Separate investigations were made into the matter by an engineer, on the part of the Procurator Fiscal of Airdrie, and myself but we failed to detect anything which led to the explosion.
|1879||March||21||Greenbank||Dalry||M Cunningham||Archibald Barry||Miner||18||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof|
|1879||March||21||Penicuik||Penicuik, Edinburgh||Shotts Iron Co||Wm Pryde||Miner||24||In Ironstone mines||Fall of ironstone at face. Edge seam|
|1879||March||22||Cleland No 19||Bothwell, LKS||Monkland Iron & Coal Co Ltd||John McQueen||Collier||19||Falls of Coal & Sides||At stooping while holing. Want of sprags||Newspaper Report - Shotts pages|
|1879||March||24||Morningside No 10||Cambusnethan, LKS||Shotts Iron Co||Thomas Gunn||Collier||19||Falls of Roof||At face. Long wall||Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages|
|1879||March||24||West Benhar No 10||Shotts, LKS||Benhar Coal Co Ltd||Jas McAlpine||Collier||43||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face while taking down coal. Stoop and room||Newspaper Report - Shotts pages|
|1879||March||29||Briton||Coatbridge||W S Dixon Ltd||Charles Frew||Collier||42||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face whilst engaged holing|
|1879||March||31||Maidenbank||Muirkirk||Eglinton Iron Co||James Watson||Collier||28||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal whilst engaged taking it down|
|1879||April||3||Arniston, Emily Pit||Cockpen, Edinburgh||Arniston Coal Co. Ltd||John Dickson||Collier||56||Falls of Roof||At face. Long wall|
|1879||April||5||Arniston, Emily Pit||Cockpen, Edinburgh||Arniston Coal Co. Ltd||Jas Neilly||Collier||17||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face, while holing. Died 9th April. Long wall|
|1879||April||5||Todhills No 3||Dalry||Eglinton Iron Co||David Stevenson||Fireman||63||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face whilst going his round of examination alone|
|1879||April||12||West Benhar No 2||Shotts, LKS||Robert Addie & Sons||James Cowan||Brusher||27||Falls of Roof||On main drawing road, while renewing the gearing. Long wall|
|1879||April||15||Dunsyston No 3||Shotts, LKS||Summerlee Iron Co||Bernard McBryde||Sinker||26||In shafts falling from part way down||A plank on which he was standing was knocked away by a stone which another sinker pinched off the side||Newspaper report - New Monkland pages|
|1879||April||19||Espieside No 5||Coatbridge||W Baird & Co||Thomas Murray||Collier||26||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof whilst engaged assisting to repair a dook road|
|1879||April||25||Motherwell Watsonville pit||Hamilton, LKS||John Watson||David Caskie||Collier||36||Explosion of Firedamp – died 2nd May||See
From Main body of report: At Watsonville, on the 25th April, two colliers, father and son, were told by the fireman that he had found a little fire-damp in their place, and that he would go in before them and expel it. They did not wait but went in to commence work. On reaching within 8 yards of the face they left their naked lights and one of them went in the dark and began to "waff''' out the gas; in doing so it was driven upon their open lights, where it ignited and burned them.
|Wm Caskie||Collier||16||died 30th May|
|1879||May||1||Muirhouse No 2||Cambusnethan, LKS||Glasgow Iron Co||Joseph Smith||Collier||19||Falls of Roof||At face while holing Died 4th May. Stoop and room||Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages|
|1879||May||7||Newbattle, Dickson's||Newbattle, Edinburgh||Marquis of Lothian||Robt Davie||Collier||41||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face while holing. Long wall|
|1879||May||8||Solesgirth No 1||Kirkintilloch||Kilsyth Coal Co||James Irvine||Collier||27||In shafts||By falling from the cage, and getting jammed in the shaft|
From Main body of report: Occurred whilst five workmen were being drawn to the surface in the ordinary way. The cage was double decked, and it was the regulation not to raise more than eight men upon it at a time. It appears that on the day of the accident the cage was signalled away from the bottom with five men upon it. All, so far as is known, went right until the cage was about midshaft, when one of the three men upon the lower deck, called out to stop the cage as one of his companions had fallen down the shaft. Those on the top deck also observed him struggling to prevent the other, who was partly off the cage, from falling away. I understand that an attempt was also made to seize the signal wire in the shaft, to make a signal to the surface to stop the cage, but this failed. The cage was drawn to within a few feet of the surface, when by shouting they attracted the attention of the men engaged at the pithead, and the engineman being made aware that something was wrong stopped the engine. The person referred to as having fallen partly out of the cage, was found with his head hanging beyond the end of it, between the cage and the side of the shaft; he was much injured, though alive, but died shortly after. He who fell away from the cage, about mid-shaft, was found at the bottom mangled and dead. As to how the accident occurred, it is supposed that the man who fell away may, in falling, have grasped at his neighbour, and in that way caused him to overbalance and get in contact with the side of the shaft, but what caused him in the first place to fall can only be surmised. The idea of his having fainted was suggested, but of course that is only conjecture. The shaft fittings were not deranged.
|1879||May||19||Springside No 9||Dreghorn||A Kenneth & Sons||George Wilson||Brusher||42||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof whilst engaged working at it|
|1879||May||21||Blackstone No 1||Cumnock||Eglinton Iron Co||William Baird||Miner||28||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face whilst engaged taking it down|
|1879||May||22||Udston||Hamilton, LKS||Udston Coal Co||James Stewart||Collier||18||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face. Stoop and room.||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||May||24||Penicuik||Penicuik, Edinburgh||Shotts Iron Co||John Kelly||Bottomer||54||In Ironstone mines||Fall from mid working. Edge seam|
|1879||May||24||Quarter No 1||Denny||W Baird & Co||Robert Henderson||Fireman||28||Explosion of Firedamp||Explosion of fire damp.|
From Main body of report: Took place in a mine known to give off gas. I understand that on the morning of the accident, the fireman found fire-damp in one of the ordinary working places, accounted for by changes which had been made in screens, &c. during the previous day. He very wisely prevented the workmen from entering into, or near the " face." Under this arrangement the day's work was concluded safely, and after the workmen had all left the mine, he and his assistant commenced to displace the gas. As a precautionary measure the furnace at the pit bottom was put out, so as to prevent ignition from the return currents passing over it in an inflammable state ; but unfortunately for themselves, they neglected to withdraw their open lights to a safe distance from the explosive mixture with which they were dealing.
|Newspaper report - Stirlingshire pages|
|1879||May||26||Muirhead||Shotts, LKS||Coltness Iron Co.||Thos Druggan||Miner||20||In Ironstone mines||Fall of roof|
|1879||May||26||Kilncadzow||John Cowden||Death not listed in Inspectors report||Newspaper report - Lanarkshire pages|
|1879||May||26||Solesgirth No 1||Kirkintilloch||Kilsyth Coal Co||James Jolly||Brusher||33||Explosion of Firedamp||Explosion of fire damp whilst engaged brushing and blasting|
From Main body of report: Occurred whilst the brushers, five in number on a night shift, were engaged blasting, and probably was occasioned by the ignition of some fire-damp lying unknown to them in a broken part of the roof, and in a fallen part of which we found gas on the following day.
|1979||June||6||Overjohnstone||Alexander Adam||Death not listed in Inspectors report||Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages|
|1879||June||14||Barncluith No 2||Hamilton, LKS||Archd. Russell||Wm Kerr||Pit-head boy||14||On surface- miscellaneous||Run over by waggon. He was at his dinner, and had crept below the waggon for shade on a hot day. Died 22nd June||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||June||14||Green No 7||Cambusnethan, LKS||Glasgow Iron Co||James Nichol||Collier||54||Falls of Roof||At face, which had just reached a hitch. Stoop and room||Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages|
|1879||June||20||Burnfoot No 11||Dalmellington||Dalmellington Iron Co||James Stevenson||Pony driver||51||In ironstone/fire clay mines miscellaneous underground||His light went out, the pony ran away, and he got entangled with the hutches|
|1879||June||24||Raith||Auchterpool [sic], FIF||Lochgelly Iron & Coal Co||Jas Bain||Locomotive fireman||19||On surface- miscellaneous||Run over by waggons while shunting|
|1879||June||26||Lumphinnans||Ballingry, FIF||Lumphinnans Iron & Coal Co||Charles Anderson||Reddsman||50||In shafts miscellaneous||While clearing debris from the bottom of an air shaft it slipped, and he was injured while escaping from the falling debris|
|1879||July||2||Blantyre No 1 Pit||Blantyre, LKS||William Dixon, Ltd||28 men||Explosion of Firedamp||See report||Main site|
|1879||July||3||Alloa No 2, Holton||Alloa, CLK||Alloa Coal Co||Archd. Bennet||Driver||14||Underground- by tubs and trams||Found dead below the first tub of a rake which he was bringing out||Newspaper Report - Clackmannanshire pages|
|1879||July||3||Dalry No 4||Dalry||Eglinton Iron Co||David Gemmell||Miner||60||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face||Newspaper Report - Ayrshire pages|
|1879||July||7||Enterkine No 7||Ayr||Geo Taylor & Co||David Imrie||Roadsman||37||Falls of roof and sides||Whilst drawing wood a stone fell upon him|
|1879||July||7||Portland No 4||Kilmarnock||Allan Gilmour||James Fulton||Collier||18||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face||Newspaper Report - Ayrshire pages|
|1879||July||10||Hurlford No 15||Hurlford||Peter Sturrock||Thomas Roe||Collier||15||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof|
|1879||July||14||Haywood||Carnwarth, LKS||Haywood Gas Coal Co||Robt Crawford||Trimmer||15||On surface- miscellaneous||Run over by waggons while shifting them|
|1879||July||20||Bent Colliery||Hamilton||John Allardice||Not listed - not accident at work||Death not listed in Inspectors report||Newspaper report - Hamilton pages|
|1879||July||22||Drumpeller, No 5||Coatbridge||Henderson & Dimmack||John Thomson||Fireman||39||Explosion of Firedamp||Explosion of fire damp.|
From Main body of report: Was, I believe, occasioned by the fireman failing to use a safety lamp whilst making his morning examination, in terms of General Rule 2. He had not unlikely been in the habit of going to what was known as a safe station with his open light, but unfortunately on the morning of the accident, the gas from some cause had been found nearer to the pit bottom. ............................It is a most reprehensible practice, that of carrying an open light to a supposed safe point whilst examining a mine, and often leads to mishaps. The proper way is to descend with a safety lamp and make the examination entirely with it. If that prudent course had been observed in the two cases last referred to, the gas would have been at once detected, and the serious consequences averted.
Newspaper Report - Old
NB - date should be 24 July
|1879||July||22||Overtown No 3||Cambusnethan, LKS||John Wilson||John Cool||Driver||23||Underground- on inclined planes||A runaway set of loaded tubs came upon him at the foot of an incline while he was there with the empty set||Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages|
|1879||July||23||Redburn No 2||Kilwinning||Eglington Iron Co||William Holden||Pony driver||15||Miscellaneous underground||By a kick from a horse whilst grooming it|
From Main body of report: Occasioned by a kick from a horse. The circumstances were a little peculiar; the deceased was a pony driver, and I understand that it was a regulation at the mine for the drivers to attend in turn upon the ponies - six in number - on Sundays. The day of the accident was the deceased's day for attending, and he had been lowered for that purpose for the second time at 2 p.m. As he was alone, correct particulars as to how the accident occurred will probably never be known. So much is certain however, that after being down the pit twenty minutes or thereby, he signalled to the engineman to raise the cage, which was done. It was afterwards found that the deceased was bleeding about the face or forehead, and he reluctantly admitted that one of the ponies had kicked him. The injury was not at the time considered serious, but he died from the effects of it two days after. The practice in this case seemed objectionable, that of allowing a boy such as the deceased, aged 15 years, to go into the mine alone to attend to half a dozen horses, and since the accident I understand that the system has been changed, and two persons now, in place of one, attend at a time.
|1879||July||24||Woodsmuir No 2||West Calder, Edinburgh||Wishaw Estate||Alex Crookstone||Drawer||15||Underground- by tubs and trams||Met by a runaway hutch on a rise road||Newspaper report - Lothians pages|
|1879||July||25||Lochwood||Coatbridge||W Baird & Co||Robert Charles||Collier||50||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal and roof|
|1879||July||28||Springwells No 2||New Monkland, LKS||James Simpson||Jas Carson||Collier||--||Falls of Roof||At face. Long wall|
|1879||July||29||Wemyss, Victoria||Wemyss, FIF||R.G.E. Wemyss||Walter Welsh||Collier||22||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face. Long wall|
|1879||August||5||Baltic Pit||Hurlford||John Howil||Adam S Houston||Engineman||22||Above ground||Boiler explosion|
From Main body of report: Messrs. Taylor and Young practical engineers, Ayr, visited the mine soon after the accident and reported regarding it. After detailing the nature of the construction, &c. they summed up as follows. "We consider that the accident occurred on account of the weakness of the plates at the end of the boiler, and the insufficient manner in which the nearly flat ends were stayed." The question of water, which is frequently introduced in the case of a boiler, explosion, was not suggested, and satisfactory proof remained to show that the accident was not occasioned by an insufficient supply of it.
|Newspaper Report - Ayrshire pages|
|1879||August||12||Gartcosh||Gartcosh||James Binnie||William Edmond||Miner||46||In ironstone/fire clay mines miscellaneous underground||Explosion of gunpowder whilst blasting|
|1879||August||15||Eastfield No 4||Cambuslang||T G Buchanan||Joseph Carruthers||Brusher||44||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof|
|1879||August||18||Bredisholm, No 2 pit||Bothwell, LKS||Provanhall Coal Co||Jno McGhie||Miner||35||Explosion of Firedamp||See report|
From Main body of report: At Nackerty, on the 18th August, two men were stowing rubbish on the top of an arch where the roof had fallen out 10 or 12 feet. It was near a hitch and a little gas was making. So long as there was a space between the roof and the rubbish air passed over the top, but as soon as it was closed fire-damp gathered, which ignited at their naked lights and burned them.
|1879||August||28||North Motherwell||Dalzell, LKS||Merry & Cunningham||Jas Campbell||Sinker||28||In shafts things falling from surface||Struck by the skeleton cage, which fell from surface. Sinking pit||Newspaper report - Lanarkshire pages|
|1879||August||29||Mainhill No 2||Baillieston||W Baird & Co||James Patrick||Boy||13||Above ground||By a waggon passing over his left leg|
From Main body of report: By waggons on the surface a young boy of thirteen years of age was fatally injured. It appears that he was employed as a " picker," to assist in separating the gas coal from the splint. His duties required him to be near to the trimmer whilst the waggons were being filled, but at the time of the accident, I understand he was shifting an empty waggon into a loaded " lye," and in attempting to stop or control it with a " snibble " he was knocked over, and in falling the wheels of the waggon went over his left leg. It was stated by those in charge, that the boy had interfered with the empty waggons contrary to orders, and that he had been check'd for it more than once. I presume this is correct, otherwise it would have been absurd to allow a child of thirteen years, unaided, to move a large railway waggon upon an easy incline, a description of work which should only be intrusted to the active and experienced.
|1879||August||30||Maidenbank||Muirkirk||Eglinton Iron Co||William Hunter||Boy||15||In shafts||Fell into the shaft whilst pushing an empty hutch towards it|
From Main body of report: Occasioned by the deceased, who was an assistant at the pithead, pushing an empty hutch in to the shaft whilst the engineman was engaged adjusting the winding rope, with the cage raised a few feet above the usual landing. When the cage requires to be raised above the usual landing at the pithead, as in this case, great care should be observed, as men now trust implicitly to the gates or guards placed at pitmouths, and when they are absent the assumption is that the cage is landed and ready for the return hutch to be placed upon it.
|1879||September||6||Orbiston||Bothwell, LKS||Mossend Iron Co||Jas McKenna||Drawer||20||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face. Stoop and room.|
|1879||September||13||Fauldhouse||Whitburn, Linlithgow||Wm Dixon Ltd||Peter Jardine||Bottomer||55||In shafts miscellaneous||He stepped off the cage too soon, and fell in below it, on descending in the morning|
|1879||September||23||Carfin||Bothwell, LKS||Wm Dixon Ltd||Cornelius Dougan||Brusher||55||Underground suffocation by gases||Choke damp had on previous occasions come from an old waste but the men were able to retire in safety on being warned of its approach. On this occasion they delayed too long and fell before reaching the fresh air.|
From Main body of report: These men were suffocated by choke-damp in No. l Pit, Splint coal workings of this colliery.
I was in the pit yesterday and saw the place where their bodies were found, and inquired into the cause of the accident. No. 1 is a very old pit. It was opened 35 years ago, and all that remains to be worked is about three acres of Splint coal in the west portion of the grounds, bounded on the south side for 140 yards by the old waste workings of Jerviston, which give off choke-damp, particularly on any sudden depression of the barometer. The ventilating current passes from No., 1 Pit westward along what is called the Big Mine past the Jerviston waste, thence round the whole of the 11 working places, returning outwards and ascending No. 2 Pit, at the bottom of which is a ventilating furnace. The quantity at the bottom of the downcast shaft was said to be 9,000 cubic feet per minute. At the faces yesterday it was only 1,500; the difference being lost in leakages by the way. The quantity was said to be sufficient, under ordinary circumstances, to ventilate the faces ; but on some occasions, as noted in the report book, the men have had to leave work for the day on account of choke-damp coming out from the Jerviston waste. On all these occasions they were able to come out with their lights burning, and without suffering from the effects of the choke-damp. The coal is worked by the "long wall" method. In the one portion of the workings, called the Big Mine Road, the men hewed the coal during the day, and during the night brushers worked, making the roads. In the other, the Wee Mine Road, no one worked at night as the miners made their own roads.
On the evening of the 22nd, John Campbell, night fireman, took down five brushers with him; Neil Dougan, 55, John Strain, 40, James Mitchell, 35, Archibald Gordon, 55, and John Sweeney, 45. After he had examined the faces in terms of the 2nd General Rule, he placed Strain, Sweeney, and Dougan at the face of the low slant road to put in some buildings, while he with Gordon and Mitchell went to the top slant road, about 60 yards further in the workings. About 12 o'clock Campbell felt the choke-damp coming upon him, and he and the other two men proceeded at towards the shaft with their lights still burning. When they reached the,entrance to the road where the other three men were working they stopped, and Campbell went in to tell them to come away. He told Strain, who was the leading man, to come out at once as there was damp coming from the waste. Strain said they would come when they got the building " stopped out." Campbell then left and joined his companions who were waiting. Their lights were still burning, and they passed outwards without waiting longer. On reaching the screens where the air goes up the "bore'' road, the bad air put out their lights, and they made their way out in the dark to the pony lye. They had matches with them and had tried several times before to get a light but could not do so till they reached this point. On getting a light they made an attempt to go back for the three men inside but could not reach more than 20 yards. About 20 minutes afterwards, Sweeney, one of the three men who were left, came out in the dark. He stated that Strain, Dougan, and he had worked 10 minutes after Campbell told them to come out. The damp had then come on them, but their lights were burning. They intended to come out together, but Strain, who had his clothes on first started off by himself. Dougan and he were a little later in getting their clothes, and in the hurry their lights went out. They kept on, however, in the dark but did not overtake Strain. After they had gone about 100 yards Dougan began to succumb to the choke-damp, which had now filled all the workings, and when they reached the screens could move no further. Sweeney urged him on, but he said he was "by with it," and so he left him and made his way out till he found Campbell and the other two men.
It was not till about 4 o'clock in the morning that Campbell thought of sending for Allen, the oversman of the pit. About 5 o'clock Allen arrived, but could not proceed more than 10 yards further than Campbell had done. He at once determined to turn the water pumped by the engine down the pit, so as to create a stronger current of air. This it did so effectually that in an hour they were able to recover Dougan's body, and before 8 o'clock the foul air was cleared out of the workings, and they reached Strain's body. It was found that in coming out of the branch on to the main road Strain turned to the right instead of the left, and travelled about 200 yards towards the face, where his body was found lying at the head of a branch road.
The accident appears to have been a very simple one. If Campbell had made the men come out at once, as he ought to have done, all might have been saved, because none of the first party seem to have suffered from the effects of the damp. At the same time, I do not think that the ventilation of these workings was in terms of the 1st General Rule. There was no necessity for exposing the men at the faces to the risk of outbursts from the Jerviston waste. The air after sweeping the edge of that waste should not have passed the workmen at all. No doubt to effect this a re-adjustment of the air current and new aircourses would have been necessary, which would have entailed considerable expense, but I think these alterations were indispensable for the proper ventilation of the colliery. I am informed, however, that the workings are to be abandoned.
|Newspaper report - Lanarkshire pages|
|1879||October||2||Dykehead No 1||Hamilton, LKS||Summerlee Iron Co||Daniel Faulds||Oversman||40||Falls of Roof||At stooping while drawing props|
|1879||October||10||Nitshill||Hurlet||Nitshill & Lesmahagow Coal Co.||James Hamilton||Collier||27||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal whilst engaged holing it|
|1879||October||14||Blantyre No 3||Blantyre, LKS||Wm Dixon Ltd||David Hammill||Collier||49||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face while holing. Long wall|
|1879||October||17||Lady Pit||Glenbuck||Cavintable Gas Coal Co||John Miller||Oversman||33||In shafts||Fall of something in the shaft, his leg was injured, and he died from the effects of the injury 13 days after|
From Main body of report: Caused by a stone falling down the shaft, supposed to be off the side of it, which struck the deceased on his right leg, and broke it. The injury was not supposed to be serious but he died from the effects two weeks after.
|1879||October||17||Lucknow||Stevenston||Eglington Iron Co||Robert McDonald||Fireman||40||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof||Newspaper Report - Ayrshire pages|
|1879||October||24||Dalry No 4||Dalry||Eglinton Iron Co||Hugh Aitken||Miner||13||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof and ironstone|
|1879||October||27||Whitehill||Lasswade, Edinburgh||Arch. Hood||Mich. Mahon||Miner||45||Underground- by tubs and trams||He was passing along the level road and was struck by a runaway hutch and jammed against the side|
|1879||November||1||Kirkwood No 1||Coatbridge||John Hendrie||Edwd Docherty||Collier||50||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal whilst engaged taking it down||Newspaper Report - Old Monkland pages|
|1879||November||3||Stonelaw No 1||Rutherglen||F R Reid||James Muir||Fireman||55||Explosion of Firedamp||Explosion of fire damp.|
From Main body of report: Happened to an experienced fireman, very much in the same way as the preceding one [July 22 1879, Drumpeller]. Apparently he had been in the habit of carrying an open light so far in the course of his examination, and on the morning of the accident, the gas was encountered at a point where it had not before been found. It is a most reprehensible practice, that of carrying an open light to a supposed safe point whilst examining a mine, and often leads to mishaps. The proper way is to descend with a safety lamp and make the examination entirely with it. If that prudent course had been observed in the two cases last referred to, the gas would have been at once detected, and the serious consequences averted.
|1879||November||8||Cavinhill No 5||Airdrie||W Baird & Co||Helen Cherrie||Assistant at screen||38||Above ground||Were run over by a race of hutches which got disconnected upon an incline|
From Main body of report: The pit is situated upwards of 400 yards from the "screens," and the coals are forwarded in the hutches to them by a self acting incline, on which twelve hutches are usually run in a " race " or train at a time. The hutches are each attached to a chain which passes under them, and is secured to the incline rope at the upper, or end nearest to it. On the day of the accident the chain to which the hutches were attached broke, and eight of them were liberated, that is, they passed down the incline uncontrolled, and across the scaffold at the screen where deceased were sitting. They were driven over the scaffolding along with four of the hutches, and fell a distance of 16 feet or thereby. Their injuries were severe, and both died from the effects thereof ; one of them was a very aged labourer, long engaged about the mine, and said to be upwards of 84 years of age. There was a safety-appliance, or "snecks " in use, which when acted upon, diverted the '' race " off the main line to a side " lye," but the sufferers were not aware of the train being lowered at the time, and could not take advantage of it to protect themselves. For the future it is proposed to reverse the arrangement, and the " race " when being lowered for the screens, unless guided by the " screeman," will pass into a side " lye " prepared to receive it.
|Newspaper report - New Monkland pages|
|1879||November||10||Polkemmet||Bathgate, Linlithgow||Shotts Iron Co||James Quin||Bottomer||37||In Ironstone mines||Crushed by cage at pit bottom|
|1879||November||13||Bellfield||Hurlford||Bellfield Coal Co||Hugh Strathearn||Collier||17||Falls of roof and sides||Fall of coal at face|
|1879||November||13||Bellsdyke||New Monkland, LKS||Bellsdyke Coal Co||David Menzies||Collier||23||Falls of Roof||At face, while drawing props to allow an upper portion of seam to fall. Long wall||Newspaper report - New Monkland pages|
|1879||November||13||Roslin||Lasswade, Edinburgh||Glasgow Iron Co||Geo Buchanan||Drawer||14||In Ironstone mines||Fall from mid working. Edge seam||Newspaper report|
|1879||November||18||Bredisholm, No 2 pit||Bothwell, LKS||Provanhall Coal Co||James O'Neil||Brusher||50||Falls of Roof||At face of brushing while propping it before leaving|
|1879||November||21||Rochsoles No 1||New Monkland, LKS||John A McCallum||John McMullen||Drawer||40||Falls of Roof||In a communication mine while lifting pavement. Long wall.|
|1879||November||21||Woodmuir No 1||West Calder, Edinburgh||Wishaw Estate Trust||David Graham||Pit-headman||35||In shafts falling into shaft from surface||While striking the kettle he overbalanced himself||Newspaper report|
|1879||November||25||Drumriggend||Slamannan, STI||John Nimmo & Son||Sarah McAughy||Pit-head assistant||--||On surface- miscellaneous||Crushed between waggon and screen||Newspaper report|
|1879||December||5||Blackstone No 1||Lugar||Eglinton Iron Co||John Smith||Miner||40||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face|
|1879||December||6||Woodyetts||Denny||R Addie & Son||Malcolm Laird||Miner||22||In ironstone/fire clay mines falls of roof and sides||Fall of roof at face||Newspaper report|
|1879||December||17||Dalzell, Broomhouse||Dalzell, LKS||Wishaw Coal Co||George Wylie||Miner||43||Falls of Coal & Sides||In a stone mine. While holing a large piece of blaes off the veez of hitch fell upon|
|1879||December||24||Woodend No 5||Torphichen, Linlithgow||Coltness Iron Co.||James Waddie||Collier||16||Falls of Coal & Sides||At face while holing. Long wall|
|1879||December||30||Quarter No 4||Hamilton, LKS||Colin Dunlop & Co||Donald McDonald||banksman||35||On surface- miscellaneous||Crushed by locomotive against screen|
|1879||December||31||Quarter No 7||Hamilton, LKS||Colin Dunlop & Co||John Anderson||Collier||13||Falls of Roof||At face. Fall of the veez of a fault. Stoop and room|