§ MR. FENWICK (Northumberland, Wansbeck)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether his attention has been called to a report in The Newcastle Daily Chronicle of December 6, 1888, to the following effect:—Three men were killed on Tuesday in Pellowel Level Colliery, near Whitecroft, Forest of Dean, by bad air;and, whether he is in a position to state any further particulars respecting the alleged accident?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE (Mr. MATTHEWS) (Birmingham, E.)
I am informed by the Inspector, in regard to the reported colliery accident in the Forest of Dean, that on the morning of the 4th instant, the ventilation being unsatisfactory, the workmen were ordered to leave the mine. A flow of water in the upcast shaft, caused by recent rains, appears to have caused stagnation in the air; and an additional boiler recently placed at the bottom of the shaft had interfered with the air current. The under manager, the fireman, and the engineman seem to have been anxious to get to the boilers in order that the pump might be kept at work. Their bodies were afterwards found about 700 yards from the mouth of the level, they having been apparently overpowered by the fumes. The inquest has been adjourned till Thursday, when, no doubt, further facts will be elicited. Precautions have been taken since the accident, and the ventilation is now satisfactory.