Vancouver Coal Company
As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, we’ve digitized a small selection of inquests and inquiries from 1872 to 1934, found in series GR-0431. These were chosen to reflect the experiences of early Chinese immigrants to B.C. – their living and working conditions, and their unfortunate accidental or unusual deaths. They range from a woman working in a brothel in Barkerville who died of natural causes to three sawmill workers who died from malnutrition. Learn more.
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Stall gave off a good deal of gas but we worked with naked lights. Joe Fox was my partner on the morning shift. (?) Hay and John Miles worked on the afternoon shift. I saw the two last at the top of the shaft about to go down on Third of May last. They were both killed. The gas in my stall was carried off by a strong Current of air and it was not dangerous so long as that current existed. The height of the diagonal slope varied. The height of my stall which was all coal was about twenty feet. The height varied in the slope the coal not being all (?) (?) in some places. It was very dry and dusty down in my stall. So it was in the slope. With regard to “blowing out” shots I corroborate what (Name?) has said. The distance of the flame of a “blowing out” shot would depend upon circumstances. It might extend ten feet or more. In (?) then it was about as dry as usual. The coal was of a dry and dusty nature but did not (?) very much in the (timbers) After a shot the dust would float in the air very thickly. I have known men in other mines to be (?) by “blowing out” shots extending to a great distance the shots having extended in flame further then they thought they would. My stall extended in about fifteen yards from the diagonal slope. The air always (?) through any shaft pretty well but the gas would occasionally collect in the roof. The fireman would notify us of its presence and we would remain outside until he got the gas out and notified us to that effect. I have never been compelled to stop work from the presence of gas but have sometimes been compelled wait thirty minutes at the beginning of a shift to have the stall cleared We used naked lights. There was nothing particular in regards to gas on the third of May. The fireman
BC Archives, GR-0431 Box 4 File 3 / BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. / Inquisitions / inquests conducted by coroners in British Columbia.