Body of Missing Idaho Miner Recovered

April 26, 2011
The body of miner Larry Marek, who on April 15 was trapped 6,150 feet below ground in a collapse at the Lucky Friday silver mine near Mullan, Idaho, has been recovered by a search and rescue team. Another miner who was working in the same section of the mine and who is reported to be Marek’s brother, escaped from the mine.

“Larry is from a large family, a mining family, a family here in the Silver Valley,” said Phil Baker, president and CEO of mine owner Hecla Mining Co. “We have been overwhelmed by the courage of his family and friends, the support of the community and the prayers and messages of support from people around the world.”

Baker said the company is investigating the cause of the collapse and has shut the mine down. There is no word on when it will reopen.

“Words cannot express the deep sorrow we feel at the tragic loss of our friend, colleague and 30-year veteran of the mining industry,” said a statement released April 24 by Hecla. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, loved ones and friends.”

Marek, a 12-year veteran of the company, was one of 275 Hecla employees and 100 contractors who work in the mine. Ten-member rescue squads, rotating in and out over two, 12-hour shifts each day, worked to locate Marek.

“Dozens of federal, state and company officials, miners, mine rescue teams and emergency personnel deserve our utmost gratitude for their efforts to find Larry and return him to his family,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “I can assure you that the Mine Safety and Health Administration, headed by Joseph Main, will conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of the roof collapse. Larry's family deserves to have answers, and we will continue our efforts to insist on safety and protection of all workers. No miner should ever have to die for a paycheck.”

This was the first reported fatality at the mine since 1986, the first since 2000 for Hecla Mining Co.

Sponsored Recommendations

ISO 45001: Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMS)

March 28, 2024
ISO 45001 certification – reduce your organizational risk and promote occupational health and safety (OHS) by working with SGS to achieve certification or migrate to the new standard...

Want to Verify your GHG Emissions Inventory?

March 28, 2024
With the increased focus on climate change, measuring your organization’s carbon footprint is an important first action step. Our Green House Gas (GHG) verification services provide...

Download Free ESG White Paper

March 28, 2024
The Rise and Challenges of ESG – Your Journey to Enhanced Sustainability, Brand and Investor Potential

Work Safety Tips: 5 Tactics to Build Employee Engagement for Workplace Safety

March 13, 2024
Employee safety engagement strategies have become increasingly key to fostering a safer workplace environment. But, how exactly do you encourage employee buy-in when it comes ...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of EHS Today, create an account today!