Rescuers on Saturday found the bodies of two &to=http://english.pravda.ru/cis/2002/08/01/33597.html' target=_blank>coal miners who disappeared after a conveyor belt caught fire deep inside a coal mine.
The bodies of Don I. Bragg, 33, and Ellery Hatfield, 47, were found in an area of the mine where rescue teams had been battling the fire for more than 40 hours.
"We have found the two miners we were looking for," said Doug Conaway, director of the state Office of Miners' Health Training and Safety. "Unfortunately we don't have a positive outcome."
The miners became separated Thursday evening as their 12-member crew tried to escape a conveyor belt fire at Aracoma Coal's Alma No. 1 mine in Melville, about 60 miles (96 kilometers) southwest of Charleston. The rest of the crew and nine other miners working in a different section of the mine escaped unharmed.
Gov. Joe Manchin and U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller informed families of the deaths at a church prior to making the announcement, along with Don Blankenship, chairman of the mine's owner, Massey Energy.