Palmer, TN Coal Mine Explosion, Dec 1981
About 40 wives, children and other relatives of the trapped miners were secluded in a room at the company headquarters, about three miles from the mine. Four company workers guarded the door to the room and refused to allow reporters to talk with the relatives.
Barricades were set up on a road about a mile from the mile and only emergency personnel were allowed beyond the barricade. Sheriff's deputies, evidently taking their cue from the mine company, refused to talk to newsmen.
Mike Caudill, information officer for the State Civil Defense Office, said the men were working gingerly to reach the miners.
"They had to go in with self-contained breathing apparatus because of the atmosphere in the mine. What they are digging with, I couldn't tell you. They do have jackhammers and this type of equipment but since they are working in a collapsed mine they have to make sure if doesn't collapse on them, too," Caudill said.
Caudill said the Civil Defense, which set up a command post near the mine, flew a third rescue team to the mine by helicopter from nearby Caryville to join the first two teams. He said workers were also brought generators and lights to the desolate mountainside.
Galveston Daily News Texas 1981-12-09
List of the victims, all of whom lived in the area of Palmer are:
DANNY COOLEY, his brother.
JIMMY WAYNE ROGERS.