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A year after the tragedy, ten different families have filed wrongful death civil suits against the company, Massey Energy, while at least one injured miner is seeking compensation for his injuries and his inability to return to work. At the same time, an independent investigation into the fatal explosion has found that the accident should have been prevented if not for problems with the mining company, state mining regulations, and federal mining regulations. After a year of looking into the matter, the investigator, Davitt McAteer, is expected to release his official report regarding the cause of the accident this week.
While McAteer is expected to conclude that the explosion occurred because of poor inspections and because of a poor ventilation system, the current Massey chairman has described the accident as a “natural disaster.”