Source: W.Va. mine disaster yields $210M agreement

December 6, 2011 - 10:55 AM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The owner of a West Virginia coal mine where an explosion killed 29 men will pay nearly $210 million in a historic settlement arising from the worst U.S. coal mining disaster in decades.

An attorney with knowledge of the Upper Big Branch settlement provided details Tuesday to The Associated Press. The agreement includes more than $46 million in criminal restitution to the miners' families. It also allows for individual criminal prosecutions.

The person was not authorized to talk about the details before an official announcement and asked for anonymity.

Massey Energy owned the mine at the time of the April 2010 disaster. Alpha Natural Resources has since acquired Massey. The settlement includes $35 million in penalties for all Massey mine violations, including $11 million for Upper Big Branch.