ABOVE: A slideshow of photos from the Gentry Mountain Mine, courtesy of the Emery County Sheriff’s Office
BEAR CANYON, Utah (ABC4) – One person is dead after a flash flood event in a Utah mine.
Authorities say shortly after 10 p.m. on Sunday, as mine crews were heading up the hill to enter the Gentry Mountain Mine in Emery County, located in central Utah, a wall of water and debris was seen coming down Bear Canyon.
The canyon is a side canyon in Huntington Canyon.
According to authorities, one man just coming off shift in a two-person mine vehicle was the first to be impacted.
As the flood overtook his vehicle, the man was able to reach out and grab a tree which pulled him from the vehicle. The Emery County Sheriff’s Office says the man was unable to hold on and was carried about 1/4 mile down the canyon.
He was transported to the hospital and is expected to recover.
A second mine vehicle carrying eight men up to the coal mine was then hit by the flood and debris, causing the vehicle to roll four times. Crews were able to kick out the windows and safely escaped.
A third mine vehicle, further down the canyon, was able to reverse the vehicle and attempt to move out of the direct path of the flood, but were unable to do so. While the miners exited to higher ground, water and debris swept on both sides of them.
The Sheriff’s Office says one man was swept into the water and carried downstream.
Emergency personnel searched throughout the night and continued to search this morning. At around 11:15 a.m., the body of the missing man was found approximately six miles downstream.
Underground personnel were not impacted by the flood incident.
The identity of the man killed has not yet been released.