The manager of Gleision Colliery in South Wales has been charged with gross negligence manslaughter following the deaths of four miners in September 2011.

MNS Mining, the company which owns the colliery, has also been summonsed for four counts of corporate manslaughter. Both will appear at Neath Magistrates' Court on 1 February.

The four men died after becoming trapped in the mine at Cilybebyll in the Swansea Valley when the area they were working in was engulfed by an enormous inrush of water. An estimated half a million gallons of water entered the area in around three minutes and a major rescue operation was launched following the incident.

Malcolm McHaffie, deputy head of special crime at the Crown Prosecution Service, commented, “The prosecution alleges that because of the way in which its activities were managed or organised by its senior management, namely Malcolm Fyfield, the company caused the deaths of the miners by failing to ensure a safe system of working was in place. It is alleged that this failure amounted to a gross breach of duty of care owed by the company to each of the four mine workers.”

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