Bureau of Land Management officials told the Utah Mine Safety Commission Tuesday that a report detailing potential problems at Crandall Canyon prior to the mine collapse in August was never forwarded to federal safety officials.
BLM inspector Steven Falk told the commission that during one of his three trips to Crandall Canyon this year before the accident, he had expressed reservations regarding the depths at which miners were doing their work in the mine. His report was never forwarded to the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.
The state commission's chairman, Scott Matheson Jr. was surprised by the BLM's admission.
"The communication between BLM and MSHA in the time leading up to Crandall Canyon was so lacking," Matheson said. "But I was encouraged to hear that they recognize that now, and the agencies acknowledge there is a problem and they are trying to fix it."
The lack of communication between the various agencies overseeing the mine has drawn criticism from the Crandall Canyon miners' family members and members of Congress in Washington.In August, six miners were trapped and their bodies were never recovered following a mine collapse in Emery County. Days later, three rescuers were killed trying to reach them.