Wanda Kay Blevins Honored by Cambridge Who's Who for her Efforts to Promote Mine Safety: Widow of Mine Worker Killed in Explosion Lobbies for Improved Mine Safety
Wanda Kay Blevins, a mine safety lobbyist and retired licensed practical nurse, has been recognized by Cambridge Who's Who for her determined efforts in demanding safer working conditions for miners. Her husband Dave and 12 other men were killed by a methane gas blast in the Jim Walters Mine No. 5 in Brookwood, Alabama on September 23, 2001. Dave Blevins was credited with saving 19 men and was posthumously awarded a Carnegie Medal of Honor on November 17, 2003. Wanda accepted it for him.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (PRWEB) June 20, 2007
Soon after the tragedy, Blevins and the families of the other coal miners killed in the explosion listened as U. S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao promised that the U. S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration would investigate the explosion to prevent further crises. However, less than five years later, a methane blast at the Sago Mine in West Virginia killed twelve. Blevins said at the time, "Here we go again, more miners, are they going to keep dying? My husband should not have died in vain."
Blevins, a lifetime member of Cambridge Who's Who, has lobbied to compel the Mine Safety and Health Administration, charged with protecting miners' safety and health, to re-group and be more proactive in their mine-safety investigations. Blevins has spoken before the Senate Committee on the existing conditions in mines and the improvements that need to be made. She also speaks nationally for the United Mine Workers of America. Due in part to her efforts, President Bush signed a mine-safety bill last June that provides for better-trained rescue teams, more underground oxygen supplies and harsher safety-violation fines.
Blevins is the former director of the health component of the Head Start program for McDowell County, West Virginia. She will appear on the Discovery Channel series Decoding Disaster: Mines throughout the month of June.
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